Sunday, March 25, 2018

Local AFT 1904 Supports Student Attendance at March for Our Lives


On Saturday (March 24, 2018), at 6:00AM, forty-nine of us boarded a bus, chartered by the AFT Local 1904, to participate in the student-organized, student-led March of Our Lives at Washington, D.C.

Our group consisted primarily of Montclair Students--many from various organizations on campus, such as the MSU branch of the NAACP, Kappa Delta Pi and students from the Women and Gender Studies program. Also part of our group were several middle school age students who are family and friends of adults in the group and MSU faculty and officers of the Local who were attending to support the students.

AFT National''s headquarters, just blocks away from the event, served as a "home base" for AFT members from around the nation and provided a generous assortment of snacks, drinks, sign making materials and a quiet space set aside for march participants in need.

We successfully joined an estimated 800,000 marchers on Pennsylvania Avenue marching for gun reform, and social justice. The program consisted of moving and powerful addresses by students from Stoneman Douglas High School of Parkland, Florida, other students from around the nation, and various celebrity artists who raised their voices in support of the movement. The event was historic, and perhaps the beginning of a new wave of progressive change in the United States.

We are pleased that MSU was well represented there, and that our Local was able to play a vital role in facilitating our group's attendance.

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Deal Reached to End Jersey City Teacher Strike

A deal was reached tonight to end the Jersey City teachers' strike after a 13-hour negotiation session Sunday between school district and union officials.

The tentative agreement on a new teachers' contract, if approved by the nine-member school board and members of the teachers union, would end an eight-month dispute between the 29,000-student district and its 3,100 teachers.

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Victory For West Virginia Teachers

After nine days on strike, West Virginia teachers—among the lowest paid in the nation—have won sorely needed salary increases and the promise of more affordable health care. In a state with a history of union allegiance, their solidarity resulted in a 5 percent raise for all state employees. “That victory is a testament to the voice and determination, the resilience and compassion, and the collective power and organizing of the educators of this state,” said AFT President Randi Weingarten, who was with the strikers when they settled. Referring to the U.S. Supreme Court case attacking unions, she added that the win has implications beyond West Virginia. “We will rise up.”

Full story here

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

As Justices Heard Janus Arguments, They Also Heard Protestors

As the U.S. Supreme Court justices heard oral arguments in Janus v. AFSCME yesterday, they could hear the chants and cheers from a large group of protestors on the steps outside. After attending the proceedings and hearing the arguments, AFT President Randi Weingarten said that, if the case were decided on its merits, our side would win hands down. Unfortunately, she noted, the wealthy conservative interests behind the case are "attacking us because they see a strong labor movement as a threat to their wealth and power." In fact, lawyers arguing for the petitioner signaled they want the court to move beyond eliminating fair-share fees and ban public sector collective bargaining altogether. Read the joint statement issued by Randi and other labor leaders. Yesterday morning, the AFT placed ads in nine newspapers around the country featuring AFT members describing how strong unions make for strong communities—and how Janus threatens that.

(From AFT Daily Communicator—February 27, 2018)