The AFT calls for freedom to teach

AFT President Randi Weingarten today delivered a major address on the crisis hollowing out the teaching profession—massive disinvestment in public education and deprofessionalization. In her speech at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., she called for reinvestment and freedom to teach.

AFT town hall welcomes Bernie Sanders

AFT President Randi Weingarten and presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders shared the stage yesterday in Lordstown, Ohio, together condemning the corporate greed—and the Trump administration behind it—that drove the General Motors plant closure here. The townhall-style gathering, and the backstage conversations between Sanders, AFT members and Lordstown students, was the first in a series of “AFT Votes” events designed to connect presidential candidates to AFT members around the country, to learn more about their lives, hopes and struggles.

Rutgers faculty and grads vote to authorize strike

Faculty and graduate employee members of Rutgers AAUP-AFT have voted to authorize a strike if contract negotiations continue to flounder. Their demands for fair and equitable pay for women and part-time faculty, raises for teaching assistants, and more full-time faculty positions to improve faculty-to-student ratios would help balance a campus where academics too frequently take a back seat to spending on high administrator salaries and athletics.

U.S. Senate introduces measure to protect health workers from violence

Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.) has introduced a bill to protect healthcare and social services employees from workplace violence. Last month, Rep. Joe Courtney (D-Conn.) introduced the House version of the bill. Patricia “Patt” Moon-Updike, a nurse and member of the Wisconsin Federation of Nurses and Health Professionals, testified before the House of Representatives in Washington, D.C., in support of the measure. Moon-Updike lost her career to workplace violence when she was assaulted by a patient. Moon-Updike met with Sen. Baldwin, who was inspired by her story.

Education on the chopping block: Trump proposes $7 billion cut

President Trump’s new budget proposal sends a clear signal: He and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos will continue to abandon public schools and the families they serve in favor of tax cuts for wealthy individuals and corporations. Trump’s budget would axe $7.1 billion from education funding and in a monumental blow to affordable health care, he’d eliminate more than a trillion dollars from Medicare and Medicaid. The AFT is fighting back with its Fund Our Future initiative.

End of the Year Union Luncheon

Please enjoy a few shots from our EOTY Luncheon.  We were grateful to have a powerful presentation from the volunteers at the Eastern Service Workers Association.  If you would like more information on their group, what they do, and how YOU can help contact them at 609-695-9562.  Through our commitment to donate to them yearly, we know that we are supporting the rights of those who are vulnerable, one of the hallmarks of a strong union!