Graduate workers at Georgetown University have ratified their first-ever labor contract, winning significant wage and benefit improvements to help them weather the coronavirus, combat the spiraling cost of living in the nation’s capital and provide sorely needed job security in uncertain times. The historic agreement—reached on May 1, International Workers’ Day, and overwhelmingly ratified by 99 percent of the membership by May 8—is widely expected to become a model for graduate workers across the nation.
AFT activists turned to each other Tuesday night for a deep discussion of the union’s new plan to reopen schools and communities, offering encouragement and calls to action during the seventh in a series of Tuesday evening telephone town halls since the coronavirus pandemic began. The call, which drew around 26,000 participants, featured a roundtable of five local leaders in addition to AFT President Randi Weingarten.
Robust participation and an accurate census count are crucial to AFT members and the communities where we work and live. The decennial count of everyone residing in the United States helps determine representation in Congress, and informs how federal funding and resources get allocated to states and localities for programs and services that are critical for schools, students and families.
More than 30,000 AFT members joined President Randi Weingarten, Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Rep. Donna Shalala for a telephone town hall discussion of how to safely reopen schools and the federal aid state and local authorities will need to do that.
In Rochester, N.Y, amid paralyzing budget cuts, massive midyear educator layoffs and, suddenly, a pandemic and shutdown, public school students have delivered one clear message: If our schools are under attack, we will fight back. That fight became all the more urgent in mid-April as education budgets across the state began to take huge hits from unexpected COVID-19 expenditures. Rochester’s city students – and, for the first time, their suburban allies – have jumped in to protes
Workers Memorial Day, April 28, happened to coincide this year with the day the Occupational Safety and Health Administration first opened its doors nearly 50 years ago. The unfortunate irony is that OSHA, the government agency responsible for protecting workers’ health and safety on the job, is missing in action during the worst pandemic our country has ever faced. Frontline and essential workers are confronting the coronavirus pandemic without adequate protection and training—and it is killing them.
When you are a child living in a homeless shelter, your possessions are few and far between—and during the coronavirus isolation, with schools temporarily shuttered and public libraries closed, access to books and other learning materials is especially limited.