July 20, 2010

AFL-CIO's Baker stresses local action

Source: NYSUT News Wire

"Jobs, jobs, jobs, jobs," said Arlene Holt Baker, executive vice president of the AFL-CIO. That's what this fall's national, state and local elections will be about, she told NYSUT local union activists gathered in Saratoga Springs.

Jobs, holding Wall Street accountable and saving public education, she said, are the crucial issues that will revolve around the results of the mid-term elections.

She was speaking to participants in NYSUT's Local Action Project, a program designed to help local unions improve their effectiveness and image in their own communities.

"Are you ready, NYSUT, to join with (sisters and brothers in the labor movement) in the fight to make sure we move our country forward and not backward?" The room erupted in applause.

Baker touched on the future of charter schools, noting the recession seems to be turning people away from private schools, and they are looking for options within the public schools. The key is the right and ability for all employees in those schools to organize.

"They must have a voice at work!"