The First Step: Check With Your Union

The first thing you should do if you receive a layoff notice

Getting a layoff notice - or a preliminary notice that layoff is pending - is a heart-wrenching experience. Please know that you are not alone. At this time especially, New York State United Teachers - your state affiliate - and your local union are here to serve you and advocate on your behalf.

The first thing to do if you receive a layoff notice is nothing - that is, don't sign a statement or any paperwork regarding a layoff. Take a deep breath and contact your local union representative, such as your building representative or a local officer.

NYSUT members belong to local unions that stand ready to provide specific advice and support for you based on your local contract.

Your supervisor may ask you to sign a statement regarding your layoff. One rule of thumb: never sign anything. Check with the union first.

Your local union can assist you with:

1. Maintaining Your NYSUT Membership When you notify your local union president as soon as you are laid off, he or she will make the necessary arrangements for you, including notifying NYSUT of your change of status. As a member in laid-off status, your access to NYSUT Social Services and participation in NYSUT's Member Benefits-endorsed voluntary programs remains active.

2. Your Right to be Recalled for Vacancies Your local union can tell you what the law, regulations and your contract may provide in terms of seniority rights - which may affect the order in which layoffs are made - and recall rights - the order in which workers may be recalled to future openings.

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