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Realizing Historic Wins to Secure a "Better Future"

Lawmakers in late April approved significant investments in the state workforce, capping union members' efforts aimed at successor contracts. Our latest quarterly collective bargaining report showcases seven affiliated public employee locals and their wider coalition's landmark achievement - their first such agreements without concessions in more than a decade. Together they demonstrated how a seat at the table yields much more than pay raises and better conditions.
 

Making Gains "at Every Step of the Salary Scale"

The recent pattern begun last year of affiliated local unions negotiating contracts with solid pay increases has over the past 90 days continued to be repeated. Our latest collective bargaining report features one such affiliate whose leadership overcame historic inequities to win a ground-breaking new agreement in negotiations with their employer. Members' personal progress will additionally benefit the community they serve as the provisions promise to stabilize the workforce for years to come.
 

Urging Action for a "Safe, Healthy Return to the Classroom"

Leaders representing over 60,000 public education employees across Connecticut are urging immediate implementation of new, strict, consistent protocols and safety standards in our schools. Our Board of Education (BOE) Union Coalition is calling on state and district officials to take specific additional steps ahead of students’ return from winter break. Action is needed now as the COVID-19 omicron variant continues transmitting at the highest levels since the start of the pandemic.
 
Click here for the coalition's updated core principles.
 

Encouraging Teachers to "Share Your Story" and Celebrate the Profession

State and local union leaders are engaging with rank-and-file members in support of a new multi-media project designed to raise educators’ collective public profile. The online platform, "Teachers of Connecticut," was in August launched to amplify the voices of practitioners across the state with an initial series of stories from the classroom. News outlets have since helped further raise public awareness with coverage of featured educators.
 

Winning a Contract that Shows "What is Possible"

Reflecting Connecticut's improved fiscal health, union members have over the past three months made solid progress in negotiations with their employers. A local affiliate whose leadership overcame their community's slow economic recovery to secure significant monetary improvements is being spotlighted in our latest collective bargaining report. By demonstrating a shared commitment to vital and valued health services, they moved their administrators to invest in both the current and future workforce.
 

Demanding Action to Reverse Critical Short-Staffing Conditions

State employees who provide essential public services are urging Governor Ned Lamont take immediate steps to address safety issues compounded by unprecedented levels of short-staffing. They have requested an extension on his recent executive order mandating COVID-19 vaccinations to avert harmful consequences for frontline workers and the residents who depend on them. Tomorrow's compliance deadline threatens to strain public health and safety services already stretched to the breaking point by staff shortfalls.
 

Resisting a Right-Wing Take-Over of Public Ed

Municipal elections provide union households the opportunity to impact employment and educational policies in their community’s schools. This basic civic responsibility in 2021 takes on added urgency; deep-pocketed special interests are funding local candidates to carry out extremist agendas. Members stepping up to demonstrate that “labor is your neighbor” provide a path forward this fall for defending educators' hard-fought gains and children’s future learning opportunities.
 

Overcoming Challenges to Take a "Step in the Right Direction"

Despite the lingering economic effects of the pandemic, union members have since May continued to score substantial successes in collective bargaining negotiations. We are highlighting a local affiliate in this latest quarterly report that survived the fiscal fallout of COVID-19 and won a strong new contract. Their focus on tapping available federal relief resources paid off for a local community hit hard by the global public health crisis.
 

Awarding Activism and Aiding Academics

Like every other aspect of our lives, the ongoing COVID-19 crisis impacted the presentation of annual awards and scholarships at our state federation's 2021 convention. Members were last month recognized virtually for their "above-and-beyond" activism, and several weeks later educational grant winners received notice of their selection. The unorthodox celebrations were indicative of the challenges our labor family has faced and overcome this past year.
 

Mobilizing Because "We Can't Afford to Sit on the Sidelines"

Union activists in the final stretch of the 2021 legislative session have escalated efforts to urge better choices while lawmakers and the governor deliberate over a biennial state budget. Among those leading the charge are state employees who have experienced firsthand the negative consequences of decades of failed austerity policies. They have over the past month amplified earlier demands to embrace a "recovery for all" approach by engaging in collective action.
 
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