Friday, January 12, 2018

UFT FORMING MEMBERSHIP TEAMS TO SAVE OUR UNION

The UFT is trying to convince our members to stay in the union after the US Supreme Court almost certainly will rule that union dues are optional for employees in the public sector in the Janus vs AFSCME case.

What do you think of President Mulgrew's plan to save our union?

  
Dear James,

With the U.S. Supreme Court poised to hear oral arguments in the anti-union Janus v. AFSCME court case on Feb. 26, we are about to enter a new and dangerous phase for public-sector unions, including ours, that could imperil all the rights and benefits the labor movement has fought for over the years.

At this critical moment, are you willing to help keep the union alive and strong in your building?

Membership teams are being set up in every school or workplace. We are reaching out to you as a UFT delegate to invite you to help create the membership team for your chapter.

The team will be responsible for educating fellow members about the serious dangers posed by the Janus case and to build a sense of unity as we prepare to confront the challenges ahead. The membership team must be representative of the members in your building — that’s why, for instance, we want the para rep or another para to be part of the team.

Membership team members will be asked to attend one training session at their local UFT borough office. The team’s work will be done at the school site, mostly during school hours.

As a first step, membership team members will be having one-on-one conversations with all the members in their chapter to educate them about the Janus case and address any questions and concerns these members may have about how the case affects them. The membership team will also be engaged in organizing workplace actions to build union solidarity in each chapter.

We cannot let our enemies divide us. When the Janus ruling comes down, our fate will rest in our own hands. Only if we stay united as UFT members will we stave off this attack on the hard-fought rights and benefits of every UFT member.

Thank you for everything you do.

Sincerely,



Michael Mulgrew

UFT President

35 comments:

Anonymous said...

Michael, all of us are being asked to do more with less. Under the real cloud of Danielson, your membership is hurting. The union is fat, non responsive, and politically corrupt. You might consider working for your 'brothers' for once, rather than put lipstick and media spin on the situation. In the end, the leadership team will be responsible for the unions future since for years they have been power crazy and unopen to change.

Michael Fiorillo said...

Is there a single human being on the face of planet earth who thinks this man is capable of leading the union through the challenges it faces? He can't even be bothered to attend his own Executive Board meetings, fer Chrissakes, and has taken the UFT further toward being a company union than even Weingarten did. He's completely null and void nullity, a bogus facsimile of a union leader...

I plan on maintaining my union membership after I retire, but that's in spite of Mulgrew and Weingarten, and I wouldn't be surprised to see the dues-paying membership drop by 40% after Janus. A significant percentage of that fall-off will be attributable to the collaboration of this union mis-leadership with Bloomberg, Klein, de Blasio, Farina, et. al.

Anonymous said...

Agree 100%. I think it will be more than 50%. Mike will use it as an excuse for more givebacks to DeBlasio. I’m retiring soon and the UFT is responsible for its own greatly diminished future. Weingarten picked him for pliability. The UFT could still run very effectively with a 50% cut. Look at the incredible amount of money they have been throwing away for years on themselves. It’s a racket. The make the mafia look like a newspaper stand.

Anonymous said...

Maybe if the union, you know, did stuff. Maybe then people would stay.

-Get us raises above inflation(maybe sanitation workers with no education shouldn't make more than us)
-Get rid of this Danielson nightmare
-Do something about principals violating the contract daily
-Fix this CTLE mess. Either get it provided in schools during work hours for free or dropped entirely
-Maybe try to bring back some respect to the profession. If even just from administrators.
-Fair student funding needs to go.

Please add to the list.

Anonymous said...

Our own union doesn't respect us; just look at the ATR situation, the 4 observations, their silence about out of control principals, the list goes on and on. My point is if the people who we pay don't respect us, how will anyone else. I'm opting out of paying dues, I'll burn my $1400 rather than give to the UFT. I'm serious.

Anonymous said...

The union is a rude, amoral and ineffectual enabler of hostile work environments. Unions, in general, are great but not when they feast upon their own to justify their own existence. Very much like the human centipede.

Anonymous said...

Listen to you guys, you are already saying that you dont want a decent financial package because you just want Danielson removed, less observations, etc. Wow, you are already settinng us up to fail;. Now de Blasio can offer us 0 plus 0 in exchange for virtually nothing and Mulgrew can say that he listened and gave us what we want. What a negotiating stance we have, what a power we are. You guys are pathetic. No wonder we get stepped all over, no wonder we are waiting till 2020 for 11 year old raises with no interest, getting 10% backloaded over 7 years, and get abused everyday by admin and students alike. How sickening. So in summary, you want no raises, to pay for parental leave which most of us wont even use, on top of the worst contract in history from 2014, and maybe 1 or 2 less observations...

Anonymous said...

That's right I don't want a raise. I want to go home at 3PM on Monday and Tuesdays. I don't want every teacher that hits the 10 year mark turned into an ATR or targeted. I'm tired of being cursed out and threatened with no consequences for it. I'm tired of having no textbooks and preparing 150 packets a day. You're pathetic - take you're raise and stick it in Mulgrew ass with my 1400 bucks.

Anonymous said...

Anno 4:49, we are not setting ourselves out to fail. We are being realistic. DC 37 or another NYC union will most likely bargain a contract first with the city. They will set the "pattern bargain" for whatever raise we get. That pattern raise is going to suck. Thus, we are not expecting a fat raise. However, due to NOT getting a big raise, the UFT needs to at least negotiate something us that will not cost the city a dime. Getting rid of Danielson/4 observations is something that they could and should fight for. Lastly, I do not believe in paid maternity leave. The whole concept is a sham as SOMEBODY is going to have to pay for it. It will be paid for either by teachers or the taxpayer. I think having kids is a choice and as such, if NYC teachers want to pool their money in via payroll deduction, that is fine. And if anybody chimes in and says that paid maternity leave is the same as having insurance, I gotta call bullshit on that. Everybody gets sick or hurt at sometime in their career when they least expect it. That is why we have insurance. Having a child is a planned event. (Or at least should be) As such, it is a choice and I do not think that others should foot the bill for it. As a matter of fact, I thought when I first started teaching that there is a way to opt our of having insurance as a NYC teacher. Is that still going on? If so, that proves that paid maternity leave should be an opt in as well. Let the hate fly as I know it will.

Anonymous said...

A union is responsible for more than just pay increases. Working conditions are awful and that is a FACT. It is NOT “pathetic” to expect our union to rectify this instead of just rolling over and acquiescing to managements demands. Get rid of Danielson and ALL of the “reforms” that “our friends” Obama & Cuomo and the Democratic Party as a whole have rewarded us with for our loyalty to a political party and it’s billionaire donors.

Anonymous said...

Hmmm, I'm tempted to join the UFT building membership team just so I can get away from teaching for a while. I'll just pretend that I like the UFT and try to BS my fellow colleagues into staying in a union that does not give a crap about them while I secretly plan what I am going to do with my $1,400 dues money next year.

Anonymous said...

Ok, so if its already determined the lousy raise we are getting, no point in even bothering.

Anonymous said...

The irony is that a lot of the newbies are going to quit the UFT because they are going to blame the UFT for the crappy raise we are going to get in the next contract when in fact it is really DC 37 or another union that is going to cause us the get the crappy raise. Thus, newbies are gonna quit because of money but the old farts like me might quit paying dues because of our disgust in our working conditions. This is the perfect shit storm for the UFT. They only way they can "win" everybody over is if we get a decent raise AND get better working conditions. My inner fortune teller says we ain't getting a fat raise. However, I am hoping for some changes to our working conditions but I am not not gonna bank on it.

James Eterno said...

Interesting debate. The pattern is for raises before we start talking about givebacks. There will more than likely be healthcare givebacks again for all municipal employees in this round of bargaining.

If you want two observations and a shorter workday, what are you prepared to give back to get those things. The city would want money for a shorter work day so are you willing to take a pay cut?

As for two observations, we know many of the principals don't like the four, just like us. Upper management, on the other hand, likes it this way. It keeps all of us in the schools on edge and that makes them happy. We have no leverage to change this and the UFT won't mobilize for it. How would you propose we get it?

Anonymous said...

This bloated self-serving bureaucracy, which has been tone-deaf for over a decade will soon be put on a diet. And I hope the officials left standing after the famine hits pick up Mulgrew and kick his ass out to the curb.

jeff said...

Then there is no debate, we have no leverage, the UFT leadership sucks, the raises are set by pattern bargaining...We will be giving back for healthcare and parental leave.

Anonymous said...

Spoken like a true member of the self-serving, bloated bureaucracy.

Anonymous said...

0 plus 1 plus 2, 3% over 3 years, higher med copays and paid parental, same shitty deal, we suffer.

Anonymous said...

I am gonna say it; If there are no changes to our Danielson/4 observations, I am pulling my dues. I am beyond sick of the treatment that the UFT/DOE has shown me. I will take my chances and take that $1,400 and go on vacation for some peace of mind. I've spent my entire career in the South Bronx and the stress of this job is real. However, I am sick and tired of living in fear from my very admins via drive by Danielson nonsense. Tenured teacher deserve respect, not to be put under a microscope.

Anonymous said...

And student surveys rating us, the nerve...

Anonymous said...

Under NYS law, student surveys MAY NOT be used for any evaluation purposes for any teacher. Law is very clear on this.

Anonymous said...

Doesnt matter, surveys shouldnt be given. Its a joke, and a sign of disrespect. When a cop makes an arrest, should they survey the criminal?

Anonymous said...

Student surveys are just a trial balloon RIGHT NOW, just give it a few years and you'll see the UFT roll over on this too.

Anonymous said...

I don't think surveys will be used. Teachers can "game" the system by just passing kids and being nice to them. Danieslon hit squads are way better at taking out teachers.

Anonymous said...

I’ll be fair and give the uft this year to work on solving the problems. Or ANY of the problems they helped to create since now they are fearful they will lose money, which is always a great motivator...

1. Safety - schools are no longer safe. Weapons, drugs, fights daily...and never a consequence. How can we educate if we can’t even feel safe? They said nothing and continue to do nothing about this. Do save rooms even exist anymore? How about a suspension for weapons?

2. Observations - the entire state of ny has 2, we have at least 4...why? Why would you want more chances to be rated a failure?

3. Benefits and salary - we are required to have a masters degree and continue to go to school, yet it takes us 20 yrs go get to top pay. This is not the way in other city jobs, with far less educational requirements.

4. CTLE - they agreed to this idea and even publicly supported it and as a result the uft and other institutions make money off of us, separate from our dues. Mind you the law was made so districts could provide this for free as licensed vendors, as the DOE is, yet they do not provide it. And the uft says NOTHING. People will lose their jobs, because they don’t get the hours even though the law is designed for local districts to provide them, and the uft allows the city to not provide them at all.

5. Public opinion - the city and state for the most part look at us as the problem, useless, and not worth the money. We are a very large union, and our union does nothing to combat this. For the most part they seem complicit.


I don’t think it’s too much to demand they solve one of these issues for the 1400 or more bucks they take per year from all the members...If they can’t solve it, maybe the $1400 is better spent on a nice vacation to restore some mental health or sanity.

Anonymous said...

I am down with what anno 10:48 said. I will give the UFT till next year when the contract is finalized before I decide to opt out of paying dues. The contract will be the make or break decision. Danielson/4 obsos go or I go!

Anonymous said...

Ha! Next year may take 3 years. Is your memory that short?

Anonymous said...

My memory is actually quite fine considering I have been teaching in NYC since 1996. We are not working for Bloomberg anymore. UFT will not go to arbitration. As soon as DC 37 or another union settles we will settle pretty quickly after that.

Anonymous said...

May as well be first and get it done now. At least we will know earlier.

Anonymous said...

If DC 37 settles first and gets a shitty raise, Mulgoon can say that we had to take a shitty raise too due to pattern bargaining. He got hammered during the last round of contract negotiations for settling first with the City and getting us a shitty raise. In other words, expect a shitty raise no matter what. (And the sad thing is the City has plenty of cash this time around but are gonna cry broke by blaming the Feds for possibly withholding future funds to NY)

Anonymous said...

Thays my point. No point in havibg this debate. No raise and no workibg imorocements, actually givebacks coming. Whatever it is, we take it.

waitingforsupport said...

Ironically I think many new and/or younger teachers will leave the union. The vets--the folks who have, for the most, been treated like sh'$--will probably stay in the union. I'm a vet, I need Mike to show me why I need to stay.

Anonymous said...

We have a shameful Union supporting bad principals targeting veteran teachers.

Anonymous said...

Why do people say they want this or that, that’s stupid (yes, I’m insulting you)?

I want a large pay increase AND I want 2 observations AND I want circular-6 gone AND I don’t want any givebacks. Why start with giving up stuff?

Also, the union has issues, but without it, you are worse off.

Anonymous said...

James, I’m willing to give the city 1400 per year to get out at 3 on Monday’s and Tuesdays. At least I’ll get something for my money.