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"U & I in Union:" Helping Colleagues See "Better Days Ahead"

Outdated labor laws governing private sector workplaces have for decades hindered working people seeking to exercise their collective bargaining rights. A management culture hostile to employees with labor representation has at the same time proliferated, adding to the difficulty. We're sharing the story of healthcare professionals overcoming these obstacles to organize and win a union election through mutual support and workplace solidarity.
 

Comments on Proposals Impacting Public Employee Pension Funding and Benefits

AFT Connecticut leaders made the following remarks regarding Governor Ned Lamont’s 2019 legislative proposals released Tuesday impacting retirement security for public school teachers and state employees:
 

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.
 

Working Together to Protect Retirement Security

A small group of leaders representing several public sector unions in mid January sat down with Governor Ned Lamont and members of his new administration. The purpose of the informal meeting was to explore potential efforts to further safeguard pensions for state employees and shore up retirement funding for teachers. The discussion followed Lamont's frequent assertions last year as a candidate to treat working people — particularly, union members — in Connecticut with "fairness, dignity and respect."
 

Showing Members "How We are Here to Help"

In the closing months of 2018, bargaining teams representing five AFT Connecticut-affiliated local unions won new contracts, including several with notable gains for new members. Others made steady progress for veteran employees, while some struck the often challenging balance of achieving both. The start of a new year is a good time to highlight two demonstrating the value of collective bargaining for all members of our "labor family."
 

Winning in 2018, Overcoming in 2019

As we begin a new year, questions remain about the direction for Connecticut and the country. What is not in question is the direction of our union and our labor movement. That's because the "roadmap" state federation leaders adopted in 2017 and which inspired many local affiliates' strategic plans in 2018 are firmly rooted in common guiding principles. Collectively, they demonstrate that the "U & I in Union" assures that when we stand together, we are strong.
 

Standing Up to the State Employee "Blame Game"

Last month on Election Day the candidates for statewide office and the legislature who pledged to stand up for Connecticut's working families won big. Yet corporate lobbyists and their front groups continue pushing austerity policies that benefit big business and the ultra-rich ahead of the opening of the General Assembly's 2019 session. Union leaders are mobilizing to ensure the new Lamont Administration and incoming lawmakers make better choices than more middle-class givebacks or additional public service cuts.
 

Comments on Federal Judge's Decision Threatening National Health Reform Law

AFT Connecticut leaders made the following remarks regarding Friday's Texas district court ruling in a lawsuit filed by governors and state attorneys general seeking to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA):
 

"U & I in Union:" Striking to Shield Good Jobs

Tectonic shifts within the field have in recent years left health professionals in Connecticut facing unpredictable conditions and precarious futures. That increasingly demands a strong defense against misguided management policies prioritizing operating margins over patient care. On the fifth anniversary of striking to protect services and jobs at their community hospital, we're spotlighting union members enjoying greater security since taking collective action.
 

Proving "Our Determination" at the Negotiating Table

Members of five AFT Connecticut-affiliated local unions have over the past three months secured new contracts that raise wages, protect benefits, secure jobs and improve working conditions. While each individual agreement represents significant progress for working people, two in particular demonstrate the power of collective action. Both are the product of members engaged in local political and legislative action that positively impacted talks with their employers.
 
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