Thursday, February 23, 2023


Barring intervention from a divine source, the financial terms of the next UFT contract will be similar to the terms DC 37 just agreed to that their membership will soon vote on. If we want to break pattern bargaining, it will take a massive mobilization that I don't see as at all likely.

This is the DC 37 summary from them:

This is a 5.5-year contract that actually has about half a year of 0% increases but there is a $3,000 ratification bonus included. The UFT may substitute vacation days or something similar for the bonus. The UFT might lengthen the contract to get the top salary up to 150k by 2026. Or, perhaps more money could be allocated for paras to get a living wage or per session could be increased beyond the percentages DC 37 agreed to. Whatever President Michael Mulgrew does, it will be compatible with the financial pattern DC 37 just established.

Multiple commenters here are saying we should get the fixed TDA increased.  The TDA is not going back up to 8.25% unless UFTers want to pay for it with a much lower wage increase. On a happier note, the next UFT contract should also pay retroactively to day one right away unless negotiations drag on for years like they did from 2009-2014.

Please also note that the future of healthcare is still unresolved for all municipal employees. Healthcare is being negotiated behind closed doors with the City and the Municipal Labor Committee.

Having said all of this, the new UFT contract is still not a done deal!

We should in no way just accept DC 37's terms as the UFT agreement. Healthcare must be clear. No more just trusting the MLC. In addition, the non-financial parts of any agreement must also be negotiated and agreed to. Here, the UFT could fight to get back every piece of our dignity that was robbed from us in 2005. If UFTers are resigned to salary increases that don't come close to keeping up with inflation, teachers are in a strong position to make gains in other areas. That would mean more than yet another excess paperwork clause. 

How about a maximum of three observations per year like they have in Buffalo? What about real teacher say in transfers and hiring like we used to have or self-directed professional periods like we also had between 1997-2005? I can think of more such as an expedited letter in the file grievance process. The DOE's excuse for ending these grievances was that they took up too much principal time because they had to attend hearings. Now, principals just attend via phone so nobody has to leave a building. These are just a few suggestions. I am sure people reading here can come up with their own nonfinancial gains, but remember, they obviously can't cost the City money.

It is serious negotiation time for the UFT. Get involved NOW if you want to see improved working conditions. Talk to your Chapter Leader on Monday.


Jeff said...


When the shortening of the day was proposed in addition to the below inflation raises, you laughed. This was non monetary.

Jeff said...

This is what you wrote years ago...(Many times)

1-We can shut up rather than be critical and ask to join the in-crowd (become Unity UFT cheerleaders).

2-We can quit our union, go home and hope for the best.

3-We can try to form a better union.

4-We can attempt to bring about change from within the union while still being critical of its flaws.

I still believe, until someone can convince me otherwise, that choice 4 is the way forward. We are better off staying in the UFT, even if we despise much of what our Union's leadership does, or rather often doesn't do, to defend us. Change happens in schools when we persuade our colleagues that it is in our collective interest to be active and force the UFT to support us. Dropping out to save some money each check is the wrong answer; it is pure "me only" selfishness.

You said "right wingers" were on your blog...

"If we build a united front, we can make inroads and make change. I choose to stay and fight."

This is from 2014...
"As for setting the pattern of 10% over 7 years, this is an abysmally low pattern to establish (we did better monetarily under the anti union Mayors Bloomberg and Guilliani). I can understand why other labor unions in the city are angry with Mulgrew, particularly when it is considered how much surplus revenue the city has. We should have been able to achieve non monetary gains for loaning the city our money and setting a very low pattern but instead we surrendered as usual."

Where is the Memorandum of Agreement?
I asked the president when we would be seeing the full Memorandum of Agreement in writing. He said he didn't know but Staff Director Leroy Barr said it would be out soon. Mulgrew asked for a motion to recommend the contract for approval. I abstained as I would never vote on something I haven't seen. The Unity faithful followed their caucus obligatons and all voted in the affirmative while the New Action people went along with Unity too. The other MORE members abstained silently during the vote but I screamed out for my abstention to be counted.

For the seven years from 2011 to 2018, where the UFT will set the pattern for raises that other city unions will now follow, we will be getting a total of 10% in raises for seven years plus a $1,000 signing bonus. That works out to less than 1.5% per year.

For those of you expecting to go back in the fall and at least have the 4%+4% added to your pay, forget it.

We will not be made "whole" for Bloomberg denying us the raises that other city unions got 5 years ago until 2020.

Thanks to inflation, Retro delayed is really Retro denied!"

Years later, have we improved at all?

Where is the united front? Still hoping and wishing?

Did we make inroads yet?

Here we are again. Same president. Same contract. Same yes votes.

James Eterno said...

Lengthening the day was a time for money swap. Why wouldn't shortening it be the same concept? Less time equals less money.

James Eterno said...

We control high school majority of voters now. Only difference between now and 2013 is our 7 high school reps have been fighting back.

Jeff said...

The 3% is less money. I thought inflation was 7%.

James Eterno said...

It is a pay cut in terms of purchasing power. I am just telling you what is out there. Now, it is up to all of us to educate fellow City workers. Another difference between now and 2014 is we have Marianne Pizzitola organizing retirees to oppose healthcare givebacks in 2023.

unknown said...

Everyone shits on that 2014 contract. It wasnt perfect for sure but it did get us in alot better of a position. You guys love the 10% number but it was actually 18.5%. Plus considering our union is literally never going to suggest a strike, we have absolutely no leverage. To be honest this contract putting another 15.5% onto the top salary by the end is about as good as were going to do. I mean, we dont pull in any revenue and they have no incentive to go above and beyond for us. Bloomberg showed us that they could just decide to hold us down for years on end. Honestly the last contract sucked way worse than this one or 2014. If youre telling me we'll strike, I'd be on board. Aside from that, we have no leverage at all no matter how many times we wear the color blue to show our unity.