Thursday, October 20, 2005
Leadership Push Demonstrates Desperation
As it becomes clearer that our membership will not permit our leadership to destroy what is left of our Union and the protections it affords us, the Union’s leadership is leaving no stone unturned and actually forcing some representatives to go into the schools to try to sell this sell-out. It is rumored that some of these reps haven’t stepped foot inside a school since the Koch administration.
Reports are coming from all districts that district and special representatives have been put on a mission; a mission to distort the true impact of this contract proposal and convince our members that the loss of letters in the file grievances, step II grievances, seniority transfers, rights under Circular 6, due process rights and transfer of many of our disputes to a panel headed by the guy who negotiated the contract against us, is no big deal. To hear their arguments is painful.
Letters in the file all of sudden don’t mean anything. As Chapter Leaders we were trained (for almost a whole day) how letter in the file grievances really demonstrated the Union’s presence in the school. Special tactics were devised to get rid of them and most principals did not bother to get involved.
Step II’s were a waste of time. This coming from District and Special Reps who agonized over the presentation of our grievances, grievances that they could not reject if we insisted on going forward. Now with just a Step III we are at these fellows’ mercy.
Seniority transfers, according to at least one Special Rep were actually lost in 1995. It’s a good thing all of those teachers who used the transfer scheme since 1995 didn’t know that.
We kept Circular 6! Wow! You mean we get to pick which bathroom we have to guard. No, it was explained there still is a Circular 6. You know we could have lost it.
Suspensions without pay, mandatory dismissals and other goodies are somehow worth the hard bargaining that our leaders did. After all we still have tenure!
Thank you for not repealing a state law that affects every teacher in this state.
Oh, by the way, we won the right to keep receiving our pay in U.S. dollars. Thankfully, the Mayor did not have his way since he wanted to pay us in rubles.
Come out to the rally Friday at 4 P.M. at 52 Broadway. Let’s show our leaders that we care for our jobs as professionals and we care for our Union as the only true protection against DOE abuse. Together we can defeat this contract.