Workplace Safety

Empowering School Nurses to Fight the Pandemic

In an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19 (novel coronavirus), Governor Ned Lamont nearly two weeks ago issued an executive order closing all public schools in Connecticut. Among the unintended consequences were furloughs and layoffs of education support personnel — including nurses and health professionals — in districts across the state. AFT Connecticut and affiliated local union leaders responded to the crisis by negotiating opportunities to re-deploy affected members to the frontlines of the pandemic.
 

Preparing for a Possible Public Health Emergency

The continuing spread of COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) across the globe and here in the U.S. is a growing concern. As professionals working with students, patients and the general public, our members must be prepared — not panicked. We are working with our national union and state public health officials to provide tools and information in the event of a possible outbreak in Connecticut.
 
Click here for AFT's round-up of coronavirus resources.
 

Anxiety and Trauma Top Challenges Facing Students, Survey Finds

HARTFORD - Connecticut is ranked among the best states in the country for K-12 education; however, findings from a new 2020 CEA/AFT CT/WFSB survey should raise alarms. Teachers increasingly find themselves in unsafe work environments, encountering more children impacted by trauma or anxiety, and dealing with a persistent shortage of school counselors, social workers and other supports necessary for their students.
 
Click here for an executive summary of the results.
 

"Looking Ahead to 2020" for Funding Our Future

State federation leaders last month teamed up with the Connecticut Education Association (CEA) and WFSB-TV Channel 3 for a survey of certified educators on the issues facing their profession. The first-of-its-kind effort engaged over a thousand union members from scores of local and regional school districts. To further expand public awareness, delegates to AFT Connecticut’s PreK-12 Council are gearing up for a second survey scheduled later this winter.
 

Comments on the State Auditors' Review of the Sandy Hook Workers Aid Fund

State and local AFT leaders today made the following public remarks in response to the Auditors of Public Accounts' (APA) December 4 letter regarding the Sandy Hook Workers Assistance Program (SHWAP):
 

Empowering Members to Meet their Professional and Personal Needs

Being part of a larger labor family that extends beyond our communities offers tangible benefits for members of AFT Connecticut-affiliated local unions. A national network provides a wealth of resources and countless opportunities for courses in professional learning, career advancement and retirement planning. Members can tap the knowledge of trained experts in high quality, cultivated workshops available in their worksites, at our state federation headquarters and at events held across the country.
 

Swearing-In Leaders Committed to a Union that's "Still Growing"

Leaders elected by delegates to AFT Connecticut's annual convention were last week officially sworn in to the offices they will hold through June of 2021. While most are continuing in positions they previously held, there were notable exceptions — including changes in secretary-treasurer as well as two jurisdictional and five at-large vice presidents (VP). All have track records within their local affiliates that demonstrate the strength of the "U and I in Union."
 

Rockville General Hospital Tech Professionals Choose "Union YES to Do Right by Our Patients"

Vernon - Surgical technologists, psychiatric technicians, licensed practical nurses (LPNs) and other technical professionals at Rockville General Hospital (RGH) today empowered themselves as patient advocates by voting to form a union in their workplace. The employees cast ballots in the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB)-supervised election three weeks after seeking voluntary recognition from Prospect Medical Holdings, Inc. of their choice for exclusive representation. The vote codifies negotiating rights for 96 caregivers at the for-profit company's Eastern Connecticut Health Network (ECHN)-managed hospital.
 

Credit and Training for Making Workplace Progress

AFT Connecticut's professional development (PD) has over the past three months offered more than a dozen career advancement, worksite safety and union leadership development workshops. The variety of course offerings has been diverse, with several led by accredited experts while others were presented by local union members who had completed prior "train the trainer" sessions. They all shared in common our state federation's commitment to furthering a "grow-your-own" capacity-building model for this valuable benefit.
 
Click here for our previous PD program report.
 

Meeting Members' Workplace Well-Being Needs

AFT Connecticut's professional development (PD) department each fall surveys members of affiliated unions to determine the career advancement and labor leadership courses that would be most relevant and beneficial. The feedback drives a program empowering PreK-12 and higher education professionals, nurses and healthcare staff, and state and municipal employees to make tangible improvements in their work lives. Stress reduction and self-care emerged from the latest results as common goals shared by our diverse membership.
 
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