Thursday, June 28, 2018

If The Union Wants My Dues Then Here Is My Checklist.




























Now that the Supreme Court has ruled on Janus and the unions must require members to formally "opt in", if they wan to pay dues.  Therefore, here is my checklist to the union leadership they must satisfy if they want me to "opt in".
  1. Run a media campaign on how destructive Fair Student Funding is to students who must suffer from a high turnover rate of inexperienced teachers.
  2. Push to bring back unit hiring and have all vacancies filled by excessed teachers in the District before any "newbie" can be hired.
  3. Make an ATR Chapter 
  4. Eliminate the punitive Charlotte Danielson rubric that is used as a weapon by vindictive principal.
  5. Negotiate with the DOE for two observations.
  6. Commit to eliminate the "scarlet letter" for members who won their 3020-a hearings,
  7. Be pro-active and publicize the issues with incompetent and/or vindictive administrators. 
  8. A commitment not to accept any more "givebacks"  in future contracts.
  9.  No separate rules and second class citizen status for educators in the ATR pool
  10.  Push to eliminate the ATR Supervisors.
  11. Canvas members before supporting and funding other organizations.
  12.  Bring real democracy and transparency to the union.
 Other teachers may have different ideas on how to improve and make our union leadership more accountable to the members but this is my checklist.

45 comments:

Anonymous said...

Well I guess you're definitely not paying dues then lol. I've already seen a bunch of teachers from my school coming out in favor of continuing to pay dues, as if the union can do no wrong. I'm not expecting any change.

Anonymous said...

Nice wishlist....I will tell you this much....the NYCDOE will never go back to an S and U rating system....and even if Danielson disappears (which it won’t)...the evaluation system will be rubric based.

Anonymous said...

This is my checklist too!

Rooting for my Union to finally do the right things for all teachers!!!

Let's go UFT show us the Shanker way!!!!

Fight for what is best for teachers and our profession!!!

Anonymous said...

When you actively support hate mongering racists like AL SHARPTON...you'll see what you'll get...(to be determined).

Anonymous said...

Unless we withhold dues, we will continue to get the same insanity from Mulgrew.

Anonymous said...

I am a simpler person. Get me 2 observations and I will be happy.

Anonymous said...

Lets just be smart and stay with our union. The press, the billionaires, the haters all want to see unions and people go down and that is the reason why this was brought to the Supreme Court in the first place. So, with that being said we can all just deny what others want for us, we can ruin the party for the Koch bros. we can kill the joy on the faces of the evil doorers if we ALL just pay our dues and stay strong.

You see, the Koch bros are banking on people making decisions with their emotions rather than what is smart and right for us all. Turn the Koch bros cum into mush.

Anonymous said...

You aren’t getting anymore money from me. Ever!
So work for a living.
This is the end of the double pension company union.
Rot In Place

Anonymous said...

The UFT, and in particular the Bronx UFT office will most certainly see the reprucussions of the Janus decision. Ineptitude of the highest level. Arrogance, ego, sloth.....

Anonymous said...

Thank you 9:02AM these are my sentiments....

Anonymous said...

A great list. I don’t really think they care though, even if 50% drop out, they have plenty of money. It’ll be over 40% dropping out and it’s not because of the money.

Anonymous said...

The goal is to break the union and privatize education. I agree, our union is quite flawed. I agree, the whole education system is far from perfect. However, by not paying our dues, things will get a lot, lot worse for teachers. Look at Wisconsin! Public workers always get the short end of the stick in the U.S. The union is our last vestige of strength as public workers. You are playing a risky gamble if you don't pay your dues...no more pension, more observations, costly health insurance, lower pay, longer hours, etc. The ones who funded Janus are jumping with glee when they see teachers talk about opting out. They want the infighting because they HATE unions and want to dismantle the department of education. Don't be a fool. The game they are playing if quite clear.

Anonymous said...

If the UFT wasn't so useless this wouldn't be an issue. YPD union isn't worrying because they don't suck at being a union. They don't tell their officers that they're lucky to have a job and to shut up and take the abuse.

Anonymous said...

When you stop paying dues you aren’t hurting the top people of the union, you are hurting other working teachers. You are being short sighted. This is an opportunity to turn passive members into active ones. Then your list is more likely to happen. No one will care what non-members want. I will have no pity when these teachers are targets.

You are smarter than this.

Anonymous said...

Can a non uft member file a grievance?

Bronx ATR said...

Fear is the only thing the UFT is selling. Fear of Wisconsin, fear of the Koch Brothers, fear of this and fear of that. 'Things could be much worse!' Yes, and things could be a lot better. There is no loyality for the UFT because it was destroyed in its purposeful silencing of our voices to quell all dissention and maintain a stranglehold of power. Give everyone a positive reason to stay. Become inclusive and transparent. No really one wants to drop out, but the UFT has ignored so many of us, for so long, that they don't come close to understanding the level of anger many have towards it.

Anonymous said...

Arrogance? How about Amy "ATRs are lucky to have jobs" Arundle?

Anonymous said...

Anon 3:48,

We ARE lucky, despite the abuse. How many people get a pension package like we do in 2018? How many jobs offer 2 months off during the summer? How many jobs offer free health insurance? I've been working in the DOE for 11 years, making $94,000 with an incredible retirement package. Look at the pathetic salaries and benefits private school teachers get. Without a union, all of this can chipped away and unfortunately, our society does not value teachers. The only reason we get these benefits is through collective bargaining.

Anonymous said...

Stop paying dues. If the UFT /NYSUT gets the message opt back in if not we are doomed anyway so let the collapse

Former Teacher said...

Let's see. I am a substitute teacher. What do I get from paying union dues? Nothing that I can think of except if I am summoned to a hearing, the UFT representative will be present. I can not say defend because I did not hear a defense speech from the representative. I did not get a personal meeting not was I given many explanations to what was going on. If I was brought up in charges, I would have to get my iwn attorney to bail me out. Anytime I have spoken to the UFT, they have immediately made it very clear that I was a per diem employee and I was entitled to nothing and should be happy that subcentral calls me.
Interesting that only in the last year, the UFT discovered my email. They started sending me weekly updates on what is happening in the world of education. The UFT suddenly started mailing me their paper. I have been subbing for 9 years. Where have you been for the last nine years?

Anonymous said...

To 3:48: We do not get an "incredible" retirement package. The reason teachers get pensions is because we are so grossly underpaid during our careers. The pension is simply a deferred compensation plan - rather than getting paid what we're worth while we're working, the city makes it up to us after we retire. We're not really coming out ahead - in reality, we're just breaking even. Corporate executives don't need our type of defined-benefit plans because they make 3 to 5 times our salaries during their working years, and have the opportunity to get promoted more easily and earn huge bonuses. My friends work in corporate and all make $200 to $300 k in their 30s.


That said, I fully plan to opt out of my union membership. The UFT is just like the DOE - they can choose to be complacent and offer inferior service because they have a monopoly over the system. The union doesn't seem to grasp that they are accountable to us as their members, and now that we can withdraw our finances, we can finally teach them that lesson.

Anonymous said...

Yah and to have Field Supervisors to harass you to retirement like Statk.

Anonymous said...

I will continue to pay union dues . The teacher evaluation system needs to be revised. It is a numbers game and it's embarrassing that so much hangs in the hands of lazy adminstratiors that do nothing all year , them stack the evals for the the last three weeks before the deadline.

If we were a trade uinon that generated money we would be valued by the powers that be .

We are in the people development business . We work with young people teaching the skills of being productive adults . Too bad that is not an element of the Danielson framework.

Anonymous said...

Are these union fatcats also "lucky" to receive 2 pensions, like we're "lucky" to have a job ?

Anonymous said...

Hopefully the UFT will now do something for ATRs. Most ATRs prepared to withhold dues. Time to end Fair Student Funding, ATR supervisors and have real representation - an ATR chapter.

Anonymous said...

Anyone here think things will be better off for teachers without our union? Do you think the powers that be will start giving us higher salaries? Keep our pension? I, personally, do not see that as realistic outcome by not paying our dues.

Anonymous said...

I agree with 2:21. I was not rehired at my renewal school. I am very hurt but at least I have my job and I'll be placed at a school for a year. I heard in Chicago that ATRs only have 6 months to land a position or they are discontinued, hence no job, no salary. I do agree though that the D.O.E. is wasting millions on the ATR pool. They should do a hiring freeze and eliminate as many teachers from the ATR pool as possible by placing them. You can exclude renewal and rise schools from this. Not only will this be fair but a practical way to save the D.O.E. millions.

retired teacher said...

I started teaching when the union was relatively new. I remember talking to teachers who were in the system when there was no UFT. Here are a few of the things I remember hearing: first of all there was no duty free lunch - there was a table reserved for teachers in the student cafeteria. There were 10 pay periods - 10 checks with no payment for July or August. The first UFT "win" was to get the B of E to agree to 24 pay periods over 12 months.

There were building assignments and department assignments - no mandated prep periods. A building assignment might be to catalog cutting slips or late slips - this was great busywork because in a large school the task was never ending. English teachers had to deal with books and the bookroom - another thankless task. A friend of mine in an elementary school was tasked with doing an inventory of books, science supplies and what little AV equipment there was. I laughed when she told me about the list of 78 rpm records she had to type up. My favorite time waster was to take the minutes of the monthly department conference and duplicate them for your colleagues to throw away.

At the time there were no copy machines available for teachers - there was mimeogrpah and rexograph machines. Teachers used the rexo a lot. Mimeo was messy and not very easy to use. A friend worked in another school and the principal had one of the first copy machines - it was off limits to teachers but one secretary had no problem copying her recipes for other people.

I agree that the UFT has lost focus and maybe made hasty and disasterous decisions but people need to think about what they will lose by not being a member.

To all out there - have a great Fourth of July.

Anonymous said...

I will continue to pay union dues, proudly. Are there problems? Absolutely, but there are better ways to address those issues. First, we must stop complaining about individual negative experiences and see the bigger picture - the importance of work we do; 2018 beginning teacher salaries range from $56,711 with a bachelor to $70,789 with MA+30; we have lots of sweet time off; decent hours (even if we do work at home); and we get a pension for the rest of our lives. On top of that, we can contribute to an annuity with 7% FIXED rate return, and can contribute to deferred compensation. Where else can you get that?

The average salary for an Executive Assistant in NYC is $64,287 (https://www.glassdoor.com/Salaries/new-york-city-executive-assistant-salary-SRCH_IL.0,13_IM615_KO14,33.htm); architect: $75,968 (https://www.glassdoor.com/Salaries/new-york-city-architect-salary-SRCH_IL.0,13_IM615_KO14,23.htm); Broker: $100,720 (https://www.glassdoor.com/Salaries/new-york-city-broker-salary-SRCH_IL.0,13_IM615_KO14,20.htm); : $129,155 (https://www.glassdoor.com/Salaries/new-york-city-attorney-salary-SRCH_IL.0,13_IM615_KO14,22.htm). Yes, some make lots more in their 30"s, like the writer whose friends in their 30's make @ 200-300,000. But those are not the averages. If they were, more folks would be out there doing those jobs. But, if you make that comparison, you're doing so with different variables (apples vs. oranges); (education, vacation, security, etc.).

I started in 2008 with a salary of $57,320 and now almost 10 years later am making approximately $96,000. In my mind, I add between $10,000-15,000 on top of my salary given all the time we have off. Before that, I worked as an attorney, made decent money, but worked crazy hours, little vacation, and NO pension. I'm glad I went back to school to get a second degree in speech-language pathology. I wouldn't trade my job at the DOE.

The bottom line whether you outwardly agree or not, WE as a collective have a pretty good deal. We need to protect that collective and fight as hell for those individual injustices. So, yes, let's hold our union accountable but bear in mind what unions, this union, has done for us as a collective. Let's GET INVOLVED - Go to meetings, speak up, volunteer, run for a position.

Anonymous said...

I also am dissatisfied with the Union, but will keep paying dues because the alternative is not better, but worse. The powers that be want us to all be at-will temp workers, nothing more, and they are working hard to make that a reality.

Of course they will succeed in the end because all trends are downward in our society now. Mass immigration is bankrupting and dispossessing us. Wacky Leftism is destroying the capitalist engine that took centuries to build and hone into a somewhat efficient way to feed everybody and give everyone a little taste of a good life. Our morals, values and traditions are in the dustbin of history as 'progressives' tear down all that is noble and good.

I could opt-out and get that extra $1400 a year, but I only need this job for 6-7 more years. The teachers in TIER 6 are already beginning to see how they are shafted and so many young teachers I know talk about doing something else in a few years. Some will get trapped, others will escape, but there will be fewer and fewer career teachers left.

Let the corrupt Union and DOE duke it out. We who have more than ten or so years, and are in TIER 4 have an interest in keeping as much the same as we can before it spirals out of control into a sweatshop type of 'job.' We need the window dressing of the Union to function for 5, 8, 10 years and we're out. We cannot save TIER 6 people or the coming TIER 7s or 8s, but we can save ourselves to the end. That is why I am staying.

Anonymous said...

Mulgrew has to earn our dues. Why should union hacks retire with 2 pensions? Why did the Delegate Assembly vote on the PARENTAL LEAVE agreement without getting the membership's input?
Why do principals and AP's still get 8 1/2% in the fixed TDA while teachers were reduced to 7%? Why don't all members vote on union raises like all other city unions?

Anonymous said...

James said you and I and most others are already members. How do you quit to be a member right now? Otherwise you will continue to pay.

I want to quit UFT now. Help.

Anonymous said...

I'm trying to find out if you stop paying dues, what benefits does a teacher lose? I plan to retire in 2019-2020. I stopped off at the union office today and it's still sketchy. Do we lose the welfare fund, health benefits, final consultation, legal representation etc? There's also paying an agency fee but it's basically the same annual cost. Does anybody know?

Prehistoric pedagogue said...

Everyone agrees that the union must be held accountable. Unfortunately, I can’t think of another way to do that other than to stop your dues at least temporarily. There is nothing more galvanizing to an organization than an abrupt cutoff of their lifeblood

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 6:07 If you leave the union, YOU STILL HAVE HEALTH BENEFITS AND A WELFARE FUND. THE CITY FUNDS THESE 2. THESE ARE THE ONLY THINGS YOU NEED.

Anonymous said...

@chaz - lead by example be the first to stop paying union dues!

Shady said...

For 60 dollars a check I am not opting out of any union that still gets me health benefits, pension, 7 percent TDA etc.

Any idiot who stops paying dues is going to see the repercussions in the next 5 years if not sooner. Principals especially union principals will be taking out the non-union teachers within a year or two.

The city will not be giving us what we have without unions.

Shady said...

@6:07 p.m. If you stop paying union dues you will still get those benefits and save 60 dollars a check. Wow, think of your fellow teachers instead of thinking I am saving 1200 dollars a year. You have to think about the big picture not your lousy 1200 saving.

@9:04 Yes, if you leave the union you still will get health benefits and welfare however, wait till there is no union and see if you get those in the future. You will save 1200 a year but end up paying 6000 a year like Wisconsin.

Anonymous said...

Fear, Baby, Fear. Make all your decisions on it. The UFT is counting on it, rather than doing their jobs. Not a dime from me, I’ll burn the $1500 first, unless ATRs get some representation from someone other than a Unity puppet.

Anonymous said...

Shady, I agree with you 100%. Fellow union members, let's not lose sight of the big picture. We need to think beyond the years we have left.

We need to start seeing union dues, which are deductible from state taxes, as payment to protect our salaries, defined responsibilities, vacation, sick leave, pension, TDA contributions, Due process (should we ever need it), etc.,. Even for folks who are in "The Rubber Room", whether you agree or not, continue to receive benefits pending disciplinary charges. That does not exist anywhere else. Unions, our union, benefit all of us - Now and later.

Imagine no union or weak-backed union and law changes regarding pension who is going to fight for our rights? There is no going back. You don't think that can happen? It is happening.

In March 2017, 4 unions filed applications with the U.S. Treasury Department requesting relief under a program to cut benefits in order to sustain the long-term health of the plan (http://freebeacon.com/issues/20000-union-members-retirees-risk-losing-pension-benefits/. For more up to date information to see pension plans that have applied to cut benefits, go to http://www.pensionrights.org/publications/fact-sheet/pension-plans-have-applied-cut-benefits-under-multiemployer-pension-reform-a

Actions have consequences, some long term. So, before deciding not to contribute monthly dues due to individual bad experiences or to save a bit of money, thinking "I'll show them" while "free-loading," think of potential risks. Crazy shit is happening in our country now and it's not benefitting us the workers. Can you imagine current Supreme Court ruling in favor of workers down the road losing pension? I can't.

There's power in numbers. Let's stay strong.

In solidarity,

R

Anonymous said...

It would be interesting to see the numbers lost from each borough and whether that is a reflection of the service rendered. Maybe even district by district.
Note how defenders of the UFT do not call for them to do anything on their part. This summer we are paying for 800 Unity people to the AFT convention - airfare, meals, hotel. Figure the costs. All part of the Unity perks package.

Anonymous said...

If you leave the union, and a bad admin wants to oppress you or railroad you out, are you still entitled to union representation?

I think the answer is probably no. I have been oppressed unfairly by some real awful admins. Some union back up is better than nothing.

Shady said...

@9:01 Not being funny but to be totally honest with you here's how it will go down. I know this because I am good friends with a couple of principals. Unions might have to protect you with a "wink wink". Some of these principals are very pro-union. They will feast with the lions on non-union teaches. Think about it. If I am a union paying principal and you are not a union paying teacher then I will have you for dinner every chance I get. Reason I say this: I heard it from principals. There will be resentment.

Patrick Warner said...

Sounds like a bunch Right to Workers and proTrumpers. While I cetainly agree with Chaz on some issues -I've always suspected him of being anti labor and right wing to boot

Anonymous said...

Chaz, what is your political affiliation?