Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Randi & Joel Do It Again - The UFT Secretly Dropped Their Age Discrimination Lawsuit When They Signed The Unenforceable ATR Agreement

It appears once again Randi Weingarten and Joel Klein negotiated an agreement that resulted in the UFT members getting the short end of the stick. JD2718 reports in his blog that an apparently secret agreement between the UFT and DOE resulted in the UFT dropping their age discrimination lawsuit as a part of the unenforceable ATR agreement that has so far resulted in only 16 ATRs given classroom assignments. Time and again the Joel Klein's DOE negotiates in "bad faith" with the UFT and refuses to live up to the negotiated agreements. Be it the ATRs, the "rubber room" or paperwork reductions. The reason is simple. Our union refuses to ensure that any agreement have enforceable provisions. Both sides leave enough "wiggle room" in the language to allow DOE to ignore the intent of these agreements.

According to JD2718 the age discrimination lawsuit was discussed at last Monday's Executive Board meeting and he summarizes the following:

At last Monday’s Executive Board meeting a question and follow-up about the UFT’s age discrimination revealed:

  • the suit was withdrawn, without prejudice, when the ATR side agreement was reached.
  • to refile the suit, the UFT would need to collect fresh information.
  • members individual suits were not withdrawn.

This is shocking. I was under the impression that the UFT dropped their original age discrimination lawsuit because of legal issues on the use of the data collected. In other words the NYSUT attorney didn't believe the age discrimination case would succeed based upon the information. Now it turns out that the UFT secretly bargained the age discrimination lawsuit away in the unenforceable ATR agreement. How come the UFT didn't report this as a part of the ATR Agreement in their press release? The reason is quite obvious to me. They were embarrassed and afraid to tell the teachers the truth that this is what the union gave up for the ATR agreement. Therefore, they kept the age discrimination lawsuit issue secret to the members. To my knowledge, no teacher who was part of the dropped age discrimination lawsuit was told the truth. They were all apparently told that the age discrimination case had no legal standing. Now that the truth is known, it now makes sense why the UFT is reluctant to file a new age discrimination lawsuit despite he influx of older teacher in the "rubber rooms" and the ATR ranks.

I can only say what my friend Woodlass said in her comments to the information provided in JD2718's article. SHAME, SHAME,. SHAME.


Anonymous said...

I will not be surprised to learn that Randi wants to get rid of senior teachers just as much as her friend Klein. Newbies are good in paying dues and incurring little or no expenses. Someone has to be sacrified in weathering this crisis, that someone is none other than senior teachers, they are too expensive and too much trouble to DOE as well as UFT. Besides, all along, Broomklein are the people she looks up to.

Anonymous said...


I'm sorry that you fail to recognize the obvious.

Randi has no intention of backing her senior teachers, she never did.

She appears on TV and does a pretty good job of acting like she is outraged. All in all, she is Oscar quality as actresses go.

Her intent is to use us the dues payers to harvest our dues and screw us continually. Name another union that has given up seniority rights--ever!

This "leader" has managed to bargain away everything that we have ever gained. She fawns over the concept of collaboration as Marshall Petain of the Vichy did.

The game is privatization under the little mayor and his coterie of thugs.

Expect four more years of "Mike" and his lawyer/chancellor and of course the ever suprised amazing Randi.

Expect the prototypical Chicago reforms that will result in the closure of more schools, the creation of many more charters, oh, and of course, expect that in the next contract ATR's will be given 6 months to a year to obtain a job. After that they will be terminated as they were in Chicago. Fair funding took care of the issue of senior teachers getting hired. In this culture of youth worship, older teachers are finished.

Older, experienced, valuable teachers? They are now anachronistic dinosaurs consigned to the trash (read, "fired" or "forced to resign") or the rubber room.

This is the future as written by Arne Duncan and all those other wonderful reformers.

How else could the NYC system be privatized? The need to destroy the system and then shunt public sector funds to private hands is logical.

Have we not seen this happen to our tax dollars to line the pockets of Obama's pals?

New Yorkers will vote in the little mayor yet again and the suckers who pay union dues to the UFT will vote in Randi and things will just go from bad to worse.

It is clear that the mayor, chancellor, union "leader," new u.s. department of education secretary and their ilk have no morals.

The people who are having their union dues harvested only to be savaged by those who puport to represent their interests are too disinterested and apathetic to do anything to help themselves. They never have. They never will.

Besides, the majority of those paying dues are youngsters fresh out of college who are intending to leave teaching within two years.

Look around your buildings and realize that the old timers are almost extinct. Given four more years they will all be extinct.

You will be extinct too.

Anonymous said...


If the union filed the suit as you say that they did then it should be a matter of public record. If in fact, our craven union actually did file the lawsuit then please provide us with the actual docket number so that we may read the actual complaint.
I don't believe that such a lawsuit was ever filed. It most likely went straight from the imaginary drawing board into the trash.

Chaz said...

anon 7:13

I cannot find a UFT age discrimination lawsuit filed in court. I can only go by the fact that a NYSUT lawyer interviewed teachers and what JD2718 stated in his article. You could be right that no age discrimination lawsuit was ever filed by ou8r union.

Anonymous said...

I read somewhere that UFT initially filed an age discrimination complaint to EEOC, and received a notice of right to sue. However, UFT let the notice expired without taking any action in its 90 day period upon receiving the notice.

Anonymous said...

What does it take to start a decertification drive? It is an aberration to call the UFT a 'union' when it does nothing but provide us with eyeglasses and dental coverage. What the hell are we paying union dues for? This has to be a grassroots movement because the courts are aligned with these sweetheart, business unions. How do we get this monkey off our backs?

Anonymous said...

I get sick of people talking about so-called newbies. We can look at this in another manner: tenured people are hard to fire, so we become the ones that are used as examples. At least senior teachers can feed themselves, when removed. I'm one of the many nontenured who was set up, and fired, with no prospects and no savings to fall back on.

Let's not fight each other, let's fight these liars and manipulators, including the ambitious Randi Weingarten.

LeRoy Barr said...

The information in your post regarding the age discrimination lawsuit for ATRs was incomplete and misleading. It is important to remember that the age discrimination lawsuit was filed because the system of funding the Department of Education put in place created system-wide disincentives for hiring senior teachers in the ATR pool. The ATR agreement reversed this situation when it created financial incentives to hire ATR’s. In this regard, it is worth recalling that under this agreement, a school could hire for next year two experienced, senior teachers and be charged only the salary of one novice teacher.

The issue with the data, as stated in the post, was that the information collected was all prior to the ATR agreement. Ultimately, our goal was to remove the disincentive to hire senior members from the ATR pool.

This in no way diminishes the validity of the individual cases NYSUT has filed at the UFT’s request and will continue to file on behalf of our members. I’m glad to see that you posted that we would continue to pursue individual cases of age discrimination that occur. Members are encouraged to contact their District Representative when they believe age discrimination exists. Additionally, a member can also file a grievance under Article 2 in the Collective Bargaining Agreement.

LeRoy Barr
Director of Staff, UFT

Anonymous said...

Leroy: Cut the crap! This ATR monstrosity/creation was partially of your making.

You have a conflict of interest here. You have a vested interest in NOT being busted for what was clandestinely done by you and Randi.

The rubber room prisoners don't trust you - or Randi, and your Executive Board double-dips in two pensions, so they (and you, too!) rubber stamp everything Klein and Randy finagle!

Can you spell sell-out?

The revolt is about to come and you will not be able to stop it coming down on you!

You're all liars and deceivers - even those who claim they care!

The crappy part is: here we are, due to non-union-ity fighting amongst ourselves while Klein and Bloombucks relish in the wedge that Randi helped them to create!

That pic of Randi & Klein is worth a thousand comments!

Anonymous said...

I read somewhere that UFT initially filed an age discrimination complaint to EEOC, and received a notice of right to sue. However, UFT let the notice expired without taking any action in its 90 day period upon receiving the notice.
Yes, that is what I heard too, in January or Feb of 2006. The UFT also tried to do something about all the violations of Special Ed. law. In my school, they not only broke the law regarding age discrimination, but also federal special ed law a million times over. I was even told that I could not have the students in my classes with IEP's identified because I would "stigmatize them". NYC is like the wild west with total disregard for any form of law.

Anonymous said...

It was Carmen Alvarez at the UFT who tried to do something about all the violations of Federal Special Ed law. She collected all this documentation, but she must have been told to stop.

I had heard that the UFT filed something with the EEOC in the early winter months of 2006, but I guess they just let it die. Justice in the Empire State.

Chaz said...


Thank you for commenting on my blog. Most "unity" people comment as anonymous and are afraid to identify themselves. I give you credit for this. However, here is the problem Leroy. The union talks out of both sides of their mouth and the truth is hard to determine. The lack of transparency and the loyalty of the top level union officials to Randi at the expense of the teachers they represent is the real issue.

I would like to believe you but I can't. I think if the union files a new age discrimination lawsuit, I would be more inclined to take seriously your comments.

Anonymous said...

I think it is great that Mr Barr posted here which definitely helps to bridge the gap of understanding between UFT and many of its teachers. Regardless of its shortcomings, realistically the current form of union is only thing that might slow down the onslaught of senior teachers.

Anonymous said...

Dear Leroy:
I am impressed that you were honest and forthright enough to openly express your views on this blog. Unfortunately, there never has been an age discrimination suit filed on behalf of the members you purportedly "represent." If you are as genuinely interested in seeing that your teachers receive the best possible representation, then why would you not want a prophylactic measure like an age discrimination suit put in place?

Francesco Portelos said...

8 years later and where are we?

"Ultimately, our goal was to remove the disincentive to hire senior members from the ATR pool." Leroy Barr from the 2009 comment above.

It's either ATRs meet with a private attorney and file it with no control from the UFT OR the UFT and NYSUT file it.

Guess which one we trust...

Throwback Thursday.

Can someone send me a copy of this alleged suit and complaint?