Politics

Comments on State Supreme Court Decision in Education Funding Lawsuit

Jan Hochadel, president of AFT Connecticut, made the following remarks on yesterday's state high court decision in Connecticut Coalition for Justice in Education Funding (CCJEF) v. Rell, which sought to reverse inequities in allocation of public school resources:
 

Fighting Forward in 2018

The planning process for any group can seem a bit like sausage-making. Without a roadmap, however, it is impossible to move forward when faced with escalating challenges on multiple fronts, from Hartford to Washington and in local communities across Connecticut. That's precisely why state federation leaders last summer embarked on a comprehensive effort to develop a strategic plan to build a more active and engaged "union of professionals" in 2018.
 

Educators to Lawmakers: "Our Students Can't Wait"

Legislators today convened in Hartford to restore funds cut in last fall's compromise budget package for a program serving low-income senior citizens and people with disabilities. Their fix, however, relies on "savings" from decreased state contributions to the Teachers Retirement System (TRS); an occupational tax imposed on Connecticut educators. At the same time, the budget's failure to fully fund public schools, coupled with additional cuts proposed by the governor to mitigate ongoing shortfalls, threaten to shortchange students' futures.
 

New Year's Day - Or Groundhog Day?

During this time of giving and reflection, a new opportunity has emerged to help move toward a more prosperous future for all. Most Connecticut politicians have for the past two years refused to ask millionaires and corporations to pay their fair share to protect and preserve our state's quality of life. But passage last week of massive, permanent federal tax cuts for the nation's rich and powerful offers hope in 2018 for reclaiming needed resources on behalf of working families.
 

Winning on a "Labor is Your Neighbor" Platform

The state's labor movement had much to celebrate once all the votes in the November 7 municipal General Election were tallied in local communities across Connecticut. Seventy-two candidates endorsed by our federation's executive committee won races for offices ranging from mayor to town council to board of education. Most significantly, 21 were themselves members of AFT Connecticut-affiliated unions, demonstrating the resonance of the "labor is your neighbor" message developed earlier this year.
 
Click here for the full list of endorsements and final results.
 

Teachers, Nurses and Public Employees Back Patrice Granatosky for Groton Town Council

Groton — Citing her record of service and commitment to working families' issues, members of the nearly 30,000-strong AFT Connecticut are supporting Patrice Granatosky to continue serving on Groton's town council. The labor federation's executive committee voted to add the educator to its slate of endorsed municipal candidates for the November 7 General Election. Members of affiliated unions last month participated in a local community canvass and are engaged in additional efforts to help "get out the vote" for Granatosky.
 

Teachers, Nurses, Municipal and State Employees Back Stratford Town Council Candidates

Stratford - Citing their commitment to issues impacting working families, members of AFT Connecticut and Council 4 AFSCME today announced their support for Stratford town council candidates Tina Manus and Bieu Tran. Elected leadership of both labor federations recently completed their internal processes for their respective slates of endorsed candidates in the November 7 Municipal General Election. The organizations are highlighting Manus and Tran's roots in the labor movement as they inform affiliated local union members of the decision to support their candidacies.
 

Resisting Discriminatory Policies Targeting Teachers

Union members' advocacy over the past six weeks succeeded in blocking several proposed budgetary policies threatening harm to students in schools across the state. Still, the compromise package passed last week by lawmakers contains two provisions unfairly singling out Connecticut's hard-working educators. To reverse the damage in 2018, teachers will need to double-down on both member and political engagement during what will be a critical year to be "all in."
 

Teachers, Nurses and Public Employees Back Victor Funderburk to Lead Windham

Willimantic - Citing his deep community roots and commitment to issues impacting working families, members of the 30,000-strong AFT Connecticut are supporting Victor Funderburk to serve as mayor of Windham. The labor federation's executive committee voted to add the retired educator to its slate of endorsed municipal candidates for the November 7 General Election. Members of affiliated unions last week participated in a local community canvass and are engaged in additional efforts to help "get out the vote" for Funderburk.
 

Defending Retirees from Predatory Wall Street Fees​​

A new report reveals billions in potential savings if pensions slashed fees paid to hedge fund managers who invest in risky "alternative" assets such as private equity. The research, completed by our national union, for the first time quantifies the massive wealth transfer that has placed Americans' retirement security in peril. The findings are particularly important to understanding and resolving the mounting fiscal crises on states' balance sheets — the costs of which are ultimately being borne by taxpayers.
 
Click here for the full report.
 
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