Friday, June 22, 2018


Nobody outside of the close Department of Education-United Federation of Teachers inner circle has seen the full Memorandum of Agreement on Paid Parental Leave. However, the Delegate Assembly was asked to vote on it the other day sight unseen. (In Mulgrew we trust!) We do have the Union's Frequently Asked Questions as a sort of guide but if anyone can get the actual text, please send it our way.

My vote (the only possible vote in my view) would have been to abstain if I was still a Delegate. Do you vote on what you haven't read?

The following is by David Irons, a UFT member whose popular Facebook Page is called Vote No on the UFT Contract. His views are his alone and do not necessarily represent the Independent Community of Educators. In fact all of the posts here do not necessarily reflect the views of ICEUFT unless the piece is approved by the caucus. Someone on Facebook asked for a person in the know to refute any of this. We would like to hear direct answers to David's points.

Parental Leave is a SCAM!!!!! (Some quick analysis)

I wanted to be excited about the new "Parental Leave," and like many of my friends on Facebook was. I am a foster parent, I have adopted several children and I plan to have more in the future. I am not a woman hating man either, I supported a leave that worked for "most"...but the details are horrible here!

1. The City is just trying to save the UFT and the UFT got $51 million dollars every year forever from the city. You will NOT be paid by the city, you will be paid by the Welfare Fund. The city funnels the money into the Welfare fund, the UFT pays out a little of it and keeps the rest as their slush fund.

2. Unpaid leave is NOT pensionable! Again, you don't get paid by the NYC DOE, you get paid from the UFT. So the Parental Leave time will not count towards your service.

3. You do NOT have to use your CAR a matter of fact I was told you can’t unless you are a “birth mother.” So there is no way to get the time pensionable or as part of your DOE salary if you are near retirement.

4. We are all paying for it, and a lot. A one year raise at 2% for the UFT is estimated by the IBO (Independent Budget Office) to cost $240 million dollars. 73 days of lost raises is $48,000,000 dollars a year in perpetuity. My question is, what happens when our salaries grow, but the contributions to the Welfare Fund by the city don't? The UFT now has an incentive NOT to fight for higher raises for us, this benefit could strip the Welfare Fund bare in the future!

5. The city and UFT have you by the proverbial chain. If you take the benefit then you must return for 12 months or pay it back in full.

6. There's a lot hidden about who will be eligible: "If you have taken other leaves of absence prior to the parental leave, you should contact your UFT borough office with questions about their eligibility." It sounds like a smaller and smaller group will ever see the lauded benefits here.

7. For foster and adoption the child must be under 6. Trust me, a 7 year old needs just as-much if not more bonding time than a 2 year old.

8. If two parents work for the UFT they only get a total of 6 weeks they can use. So you both have to pay for it with 73 days of no raises, but you can't both benefit from it!

9. If you receive your child/have your baby during the summer you may lose all or part of the benefit. A man, woman adopting, people fostering, etc. only gets 6 weeks, so there is a large swath of the year(summer) you would not benefit. Again, the UFT walks away with $51 million every year forever and most of us get NOTHING!

10. Our chance at paid FMLA leave is gone. The UFT settled for nothing! Remember, this is only for parents, not for personal illness, taking care of a sick family members, etc. like NYS mandates for private employees now.

I am sure there are a lot more bombs to come when the full details see the light of day. The UFT is by far the biggest winner, watch closely, the Welfare Fund will not payout $51 million dollars for decades...but they will hire 100’s of Unity Hacks to administer the money!

But rest assured, NYC gave us nothing! We ALL paid for it with our own money! Michael Mulgrew and UFT are horrible negotiators, they go in with a dollar of OUR MONEY and come out with ten-dimes for themselves and call it a win.

David Irons


Michael Fiorillo said...

I was a charity student in math, so could someone explain how postponing the expiration of the current contract for 73 days result in forty-eight million dollars in losses "in perpetuity," as David claims in point #4?

It's good that he is raising skeptical points about this agreement, but I don't understand the reasoning/calculations behind that claim, and it undermines the rest of his argument for me.

Anonymous said...

He explains the math pretty clearly. 2% raise for UFT = $240,000,000.

$240,000,000 divided by 365 days = $657,534.247 per day

$657,534.247 x 73 days = $48,000,000

Since we lose that 73 days, rolling forward and indefinitely we always are missing that money, every year forever. It will ever be in ou contracts and never be part of our salary. Really he is underestimating the cost to us all since we would recivece compounding raises on that money every year and contract.

Anonymous said...

That is how the city costs out a settlement. If you had the raise on November 30, the city would have to pay from that day forward. Now they don't have to pay until the middle of February.

In addition, future annual raises will now begin 73 days later forever. By postponing a contract, city saves in perpetuity, we lose.

Anonymous said...

Then what did we win if we paid for it? Plus 2% is low. Inflation is over 2%. If we got a 3% raise then we would have lost 24 million. If the police got 4% in binding arbitration and we got that too, then we lost 48 million.

This sounds worse than not getting anything!

Anonymous said...

Public relations for the members.

Michael Fiorillo said...

Fair enough regarding the math, but it's nevertheless based on the assumption that a new contract would have begun immediately after the end of the current one, something that has happened exactly once in my twenty year-plus career.

Anonymous said...

Also, not sure he's correct about not being able to use CAR days.

Anonymous said...

True but there is a big but Michael. Contracts are usually late but the new raises go back to the start day of the new contract which is the day after the old one ends. The raises are often paid retroactively. However, the date the new raises start compounding is from the starting date of the new contract which is one day after the old one ended. Then a year from that date and then another year from that date new raises kick in. Why do you think the city loves zeros even if for half a year? Whenever they stick in a little delay, the city saves a fortune to use David's words in perpetuity.

Anonymous said...

You think Mulgrew could figure out this math?

Anonymous said...

David is smart.

From UFT FAQ on Parental leave:

Must I use all my CAR days before beginning my six weeks of paid parental leave?

You do not have to use any CAR days. You may choose to use them. A birth mother may choose to use up to six weeks of CAR days for a vaginal birth and may use up to eight weeks of CAR days for a C-section birth. But you do not have to use any of them. The mother who gives birth and has no CAR days in her bank immediately begins six weeks of paid parental leave.

Can fathers use CAR days?

No. CAR days are for self-care for a medical condition.

John G said...

Lol. We dont lose those days forever.

John G said...

He's not.he's not correct about a lot of things.

Anonymous said...

Then stop all your bitchin bitches and drop out of the UFT. Otherwise shut up. This was a good deal and I hate that bald headed jackass.

Anonymous said...

But the only restriction kn using days is a doctors note. You mean you can't find a doctor to write you a note? Seriously? Call mine. He wrote "exaustion" for about 2 months.

He was right! I was exausted!

How smart is David, again?

Anonymous said...

All you people who want to put this down just hate women. YOu should want us to benefit, we have the babies. This is a union all for women, get used to it we ain't leaving. This was a big win for the UFT and city lost a lot with it. You just odn't want to see it.

Anonymous said...

Some facts please to show where the post is incorrect.

Anonymous said...

I would love to see a battle of the math teachers over who has this right.

Anonymous said...

How can you have that battle when nobody has seen the MOA.

Anonymous said...

I understand all the issues he puts out, and I believe them to all be true. However this is the deal, this is what we got, and it is a chance to save our union! Putting all the problems out there with no solutions isn’t doing anything but helping our foes. The UFT obviously did this just to notch a win before the court case results come out. The truth is that most teachers are very stupid. Let them stay stupid! And let them pay their dues thinking they have a good union. The fact is that 99.99% of teachers will never see these posts and then only get the spin. So you’re all wasting your time. End of discussion

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the information. The UFT has given us very few details and the deeper you look, the more problems you see. At least we have some people who are observing, examining and reporting back to us.

Does anyone know where I can read the full contract with the city on this? I do wonder what it actually says.

James Eterno said...

The UFT hasn't posted it. They didn't give it out at the DA. That is why I would have abstained.

Anonymous said...

The fact that Mulgrew portrays this to membership as a "win" from the city just underscores the CONTEMPT he has for NYC teachers. He believes(and correctly) that most of membership is STOOOPID.

Anonymous said...

Anon 5:43. I'd love to see a win. You can't call something we pay for a win. It's not fair to label those who don't see this as a win as women haters. We don't have all the details but the thing we know for sure is that the entire membership is paying for this. Mulgrew didn't get anything from NYC-- he got the entire membership to pay for a benfit for some of the membership. There are currently 2 teachers in my school who may benefit from this next year. They still have questions. They're still not sure how they make out ahead. CAR days may be used prior to paid leave but not after. Can they just use 1-2 weeks of CAR but not all? Why can't they get the 6 weeks paid and then decide if they need more time with their baby before returning and use CAR for child care? Currently 3 days per year can be used to care for sick child. Mulgrew got nothing on freeing up more of the 10 sick days or CAR for child care once moms return to work. I'm not going to quibble about a loss of some of my money that may very well benefit teachers I personally know or teachers across the city but I'm not drinking UNITY Kool-Aid and calling this a victory when it is not. It's no more a victory then my declaring victory that I received some delicious sushi last night in exchange for the $40 I gave the restaurant. It's also not a victory if some good samaritan believes everyone who can't afford sushi should still get some sushi and then decides that these sushi-poor people should get to take $5 worth of sushi from my plate. What's relevant here is that I paid for the damn sushi to benefit someone else just like we are paying so some of our colleagues can benefit from a paid leave. Giving away my sushi is not a victory for the good samaritan and this deal is not a victory for the UFT. Basically Mulgrew begged NYC to allow people like me (never will have children/already had children) to forgo a raise to pay people like you. Good for you if you benfit but please let's not all pretend Mulgrew negotiated a victory. He got permission for some members to take from all members. If I were part of the "some" I would express my gratitude to the "all" rather than to Mulgrew and I would be humble enough to not delare victory when my fellow members are losing money to make my life just a little bit easier with my newborn. With all that said I sincerely hope you benefit from the new policy if and when you choose to have a baby. Roseanne McCosh

Anonymous said...


What do you mean that the folks in your school “STILL” have questions.

It has only been three days.

As a far you not benefiting from a benefit, I hope they are a lot of benefits you never benefit from.

I hope you don’t need medication for high blood pressure.
I hope you don’t need the services of the mental health professionals at MAP.
I hope you don’t need professional guidance from the folks at PIP.
I hope you don’t need root canal.

The menu of benefits is there for all of us. We use some, we don’t use others

And just maybe, just maybe, one of our older members or another member who did not plan a child, actually decides to adopt a child, that benefit will be there for them as well. You never know what tomorrow brings.

James Eterno said...

Well said as usual Roseanne!!

ed notes online said...

I'm not going to deal with the agreement itself but the process Unity leadership used.
Press conference on day of -- no materials handed out with details -- quick ratification at DA -- whereas this discussion should have been taking place in the schools with the membership before ratification. Yes they wanted a "win" before Janus but this process is the same that has been followed time and again.

Anonymous said...

Hey anno 11:40, you are clueless as hell. I don't need blood pressure medication now but I might need it in the future. I don't need mental health services now but i may need it the future. I don't need professional guidance from the folks at PIP but I may need it in the future. I don't need a root canal now but I might need it in the future. I sure as fuck don't need paid maternity leave since I am sterile so I will NEVER need it in the future. Your argument is dog shit. You have no right to compare health insurance needs to the choice of a teacher who wants to have a child. We all get sick form time to time. Maybe not right now, but we all will get sick in the future and that is why we have no problem having deductions taken from our salary. However, we all DO NOT choose to have kids and as such, we should not be penalized for this choice by loosing our salary to fund those who do choose to have kids. Lastly, if I am not mistaken, teachers in NYC can choose to opt our of having medical insurance and can save a lot of money in that regard. Why can't we choose not to pay in to fund to pay for maternity leave?

Anonymous said...

First, I’m glad David Irons looked at the little bit out there put it together and explained it.

But the fact is we all remain ignorant! We don’t actually understand what we lost or won. Teachers as a whole are letting the UFT get away with not giving us a copy of exactly what we agreed to. Scanning a document and uploading it takes all of three-minutes. There are probably a lot of surprises coming.

John G said...

This is a good point, Norm. I think a lot of the tasks of negotions should be done quietly, but, after reading, I really agree that the MOA could have been shared and at least read before being voted on. EB shoild have had a copy and the same with the DA.
I'm sure that has its own vicisitudes in a big org like the UFT, but the end result would have had a legitimizing effect beyond what the agreement already has.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 11:40. I believe you were responding to my comment. If you read it, it's clear that my focus was on Mulgrew falsely declaring this a victory, not with my losing a few bucks so teachers can go out on paid child care leave. I didn't attack the teachers who will benefit from the leave. I attacked Mulgrew/Unity for claiming victory where there isn't one. Roseanne McCosh

James Eterno said...

Mulgrew set the precedent in 2014 when the Executive Board and negotiating committee voted on the contract before they saw it. NAC voted no in 2014 and I loudly abstained at the negotiating committee. I'll never forget the snide "and one abstention" as he announced the results.

Also, in the pre-Mulgrew UFT past, if there was a contractual change, extending it 73 days is certainly a change, it went to the membership for ratification. I seem to remember every year from 2002-2005 Randi would negotiate a change in the time schedule and then we would vote on it in the schools in a secret ballot ratification vote. That was the policy and practice for this union until Mulgrew. Change the contract, members vote. Not any longer.

What is surprising is that this didn't even come up in the discussion around parental leave. Institutional memory is dying. We'll try to keep it alive but it's not easy.

waitingforsupport said...

Lol at 5:25 PM I sure needed that chuckle