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Local Unions

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our voice our values our union
sticking with our union
majority leader flanagan
Oct 16

Fired up yet? Volunteer to phone bank!

Volunteer to phone bank with your NYSUT colleagues to support pro-education and pro-labor candidates!

Download the schedule and find a location near you!

Now we know what Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan really thinks.

In a recent radio interview, Senator Flanagan complained about NYSUT's efforts to fight to defend educators, saying we're one of the “forces of evil” fighting for reform in Albany. That's right: he thinks we're evil. That must be why he and his colleagues chose to turn their backs on educators so they could cozy up to Wall Street billionaires and the charter industry.

DOWNLOAD THE SCHEDULE (PDF) and take action to volunteer for NYSUT phone banks... and help RETIRE John Flanagan as Senate Majority Leader!

Senator John Flanagan has consistently opposed and blocked key initiatives and investments that could have helped strengthen public schools, while at the same time working to undermine and threaten the rights and financial security of working people.

Now, by grossly insulting hard-working, dedicated educators all across the state, Senator Flanagan has made it clear that as long as he remains the Senate Majority Leader, educators and working people will never get a fair shake. But you and I can do something about that.

DOWNLOAD THE SCHEDULE (PDF) and take action to volunteer for NYSUT phone banks... and help RETIRE John Flanagan as Senate Majority Leader!

We are now just weeks away from the November election, and we can be the difference in the outcome! Will you help?

In solidarity.

Andrew Pallotta
NYSUT President

Oct 15

NYSUT’s Pallotta: Sen. Flanagan “must be getting desperate”

ALBANY, N.Y. Oct.15, 2018 — New York State United Teachers President Andy Pallotta responded to Sen. John Flanagan’s attack today on “The Capitol Pressroom”:

“Sen. Flanagan must be getting desperate if he’s saying that more than 600,000 educators are forces for evil. He had a chance to stand with teachers by reforming the state's broken testing and evaluation system but instead he chose to cozy up to Wall Street billionaires and the charter industry.”

srp union value
Oct 12

School-Related Professionals are 'fighting for our union'

School-Related Professionals who drive buses, serve food, clean buildings, and serve as secretaries and security personnel will gather this weekend in Albany for NYSUT’s statewide professional development conference, at which they will welcome 59 newcomers and another 150 returning members.

And when they do, they’ll learn about a new state law providing them with enhanced employment protections that aim to prevent unfair terminations. The legislation ensures workers now receive due process, and have the right to union representation, as well as written notice of all charges brought against them.

Covered under the new law are members working in transportation, clerical, food service, buildings and grounds, and other SRP titles. Previously, public-sector labor-class employees only had these rights if they were included in collective bargaining agreements.

Those attending this weekend’s conference will also be reflecting on NYSUT’s successful summer and autumn campaigns to keep members in the union and attract new hires. Since the Janus Supreme Court decision allowing people to opt out of paying mandatory dues despite enjoying the benefits of union membership such as collective bargaining, NYSUT members have been out visiting colleagues and explaining to them why it’s worth sticking with their union. It’s this type of grassroots organizing that leads to stronger workplace rights, such as the new legislation guaranteeing due-process protections.

“I had great experiences talking with members. It was almost life changing. We are a phenomenal group of people,” said Claudia Leone, a member of NYSUT’s SRP Advisory Committee and a Brocton TA who knocked on doors in Chautauqua County this summer to speak with fellow SRPs.

“I met a lot of hardworking SRPs. Some single moms, some working two jobs to make ends meet,” she said. “I met a cafeteria worker raising her grandchildren. It was very emotional for me talking with these women.

“It’s tough for a lot of people. We have to bring everyone up.

Being in a union helps workers have a collective voice to call for being paid a living wage, workers’ rights on the job, and job security,” said Leone, a teaching assistant who learned Braille to help a visually impaired student with homework assignments, review sheets and testing.

Leone said the experience of going out and speaking one-on-one with members this past summer was not her first rodeo: she also did so before the 2017 Constitutional Convention vote.

“I keep wearing out shoes,” she said with a chuckle. “It’s a good cause we’re fighting for. It’s our livelihood. We’re fighting for our union. And we’re connecting with our members.”

“Never forget,” said Kimberley McEvoy, chair of the NYSUT SRP Advisory Committee, “that being in a union secures a safer working environment, benefits, salary, how many hours a day we work, and workers’ rights.”

A member of the Rondout Valley Federation of Teachers and SRPs, McEvoy said, “I’m proud to say we’re a 100-percent local, including all 9 new SRP’s who became union members.”

McEvoy, who works in her district’s business office, said this weekend’s conference — providing important professional-development credits and resources such as coursework through NYSUT’s Education and Learning Trust — is just another example of what the statewide union offers its members.

SRPs also will be donating books this through this year’s conference to the Syracuse City School District, as well as raising money for the NYSUT Disaster Relief Fund, which helps members in need.

“Overall,” said McEvoy, “the conference is a chance for union sisters and brothers to share strategies, education and community.”

Twitter Moments

Oct 11

NYSUT 2019 award nominations must be submitted by December 3rd

Award nominations for the following NYSUT awards are due by December 3rd.

Submit nominations for these 2019 NYSUT Awards:

  • 2019 NYSUT Constituency Awards Nomination Form
  • "Not for Ourselves Alone" Sandy Feldman Award Nomination Form
  • Sandy Feldman Leadership Grant Application
  • Community Service Award Nomination Form:
    • Community Service by Local Union
    • Community Service by Individual Member or Members
  • NYSUT Life Line Honor Roll Nomination Form
  • Ken Kurzweil Social Justice Recognition Award Form

Download forms here.

Oct 11

NYSUT commends UFT on tentative contract agreement

ALBANY, N.Y. Oct. 11, 2018 — New York State United Teachers today congratulated the United Federation of Teachers, its largest local affiliate, on reaching a tentative agreement with New York City on a new contract.

“Strong unions deliver for their members,” said NYSUT President Andy Pallotta. “There’s no doubt about the UFT’s power in successfully advocating for higher pay, affordable health insurance and better conditions for teaching and learning. This tentative agreement says clearly, ‘It pays to be a union member.’ On behalf of NYSUT’s officers and all its members, I congratulate President Mulgrew and the UFT leadership on reaching this tentative agreement, which recognizes the incredible job educators do on behalf of the city’s students and public schools.”

New York State United Teachers is a statewide union with more than 600,000 members in education, human services and health care. NYSUT is affiliated with the American Federation of Teachers, the National Education Association and the AFL-CIO.

florence mccue
Oct 11

Retirees vital to keeping NYSUT strong

At the ED 51-53 Retiree Contiguous meeting in October, one message rang loud and clear: To successfully weather the storms of one of the most relentlessly anti-union climates in a generation, NYSUT needs the help of its retirees.

Florence McCue, Ed 51-53 at-large director, encouraged activists to find ways to stay involved with their in-service locals. “I help new presidents preserve institutional memory by acting as the historian,” said McCue, a retiree member on her local’s board. “That kind of help is useful and important.”

“We appreciate each and every one of you,” said NYSUT President Andy Pallotta, who welcomed attendees to headquarters at the start of the two-day meeting and encouraged them to keep doing what they do best — being the union’s daytime army and remaining politically active. “NYSUT is a powerful and relentless union because of the foundation you laid for us.”


Retiree Meeting ED 51-53

Paul Pecorale, NYSUT second vice president, updated activists about the state of NYSUT enrollment in a post-Janus world, noting that so far 275 individuals have dropped their membership. “We’ve learned from other states that it’s not about the immediate loss of membership, but the slow bleed of losing membership over the long term,” he said. “That’s where retirees come in.”

He encouraged retirees to share their individual union stories from over the last 40 or 50 years with in-service members. “Talk about job changes that have happened in your lifetime and what you’ve seen,” said Pecorale. “Engage in those conversations because this is a new world and I don’t think we’ll have a full understanding of it for three more years.”

Training is available through NYSUT’s Retiree Political and Organizing Program, including a half-day storyteller workshop to help retirees effectively tell their union stories, pipeline trainings to prepare individuals to run for political office, virtual phone bank and Minivan training, and a fall postcard campaign aimed at getting Social Security advocate Dr. Eric Kingson appointed to the Social Security Advisory Board.

Pecorale also encouraged retirees to contact his office about $50 classroom grants for in-service teachers that are available to retiree councils through the American Federation of Teachers.

In an evening address, Alan Lubin, NYSUT executive vice president emeritus, underscored the importance of the November mid-term election. “We have a chance to turn the tide,” said Lubin, who encouraged attendees to form coalitions with social justice groups to protect those must vulnerable, including farmworkers and immigrants. “Do more than vote; help get people to the polls and make personal calls.”

Other meeting highlights included updates from the retiree advisory and resolutions committees and a group-wide sharing of best practices. Attendees also commemorated the lives of Alma Cormican, Sandra Bliss and Dan Boone, retiree leaders who died over the last year.

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