Thursday, April 28, 2011

[PDI] Call your Illinois Rep to oppose Illinois SB7

Hi all,

The following is a request made by a retired college prof and Chicago
activist, asking us to call our Illinois Reps to oppose SB7.

SB7 involves bargaining rights of Illinois teachers and was developed by
the IEA, IFT, and CTU together with other "stakeholders":
. Here is how a "grassroots" group describes the benefits of SB7:

AND this is from the aforementioned Chicago teacher/activist, describing
what SB7 REALLY does to the CTU in particular (and Illinois teachers by
extension) and ends with his conclusion as to why SB7 needs to be opposed:

1. Restricts the right to strike to almost impossible conditions (75% of
the entire bargaining unit membership must vote yes + 6 months delay).
Handcuffs the CTU just when members face closings and charter
replacements, an announced $700,000,000 budget deficit with huge layoffs
threatened, and upcoming contract negotiations. Poses a threat of
similar legislation to all unions in Illinois.

2. Imposes increased workload for teachers (and students) without a
prior agreement with the Union. Added workload without compensation
guaranteed. No ability to negotiate an educationally-sound
implementation that is student-friendly. Poses a threat of
similarly-imposed unpaid workloads for all public sector workers.

3. Excludes Chicago CTU bargaining unit members from the hiring rights
of laid- off members which apply to every other teacher union across
Illinois. Again, this exception opens the door to extending it against
all other teacher and public sector union workers.
4. Excludes CTU from I.E.L.R.A. (IL Educational Labor Relations Act)
means eliminating members rights to file and seek relief from Unfair
Labor Practices. This would be like taking away a person's right to file
a lawsuit when damaged. Again. this sets a precedent directly aimed at
all educational workers across the state.
While I originally proposed the first three in my motion to Monday's
CORE meeting, I'm coming to think that opposing SB7 is needed since
there's not one good thing to salvage. As you can see, the basis exists
to reach out to other teachers outside of Chicago, their locals, and
other public and even private- sector workers/unions. The specifics
aimed at CTU members in SB7 are bullets that can be aimed at them.
That's the basis for solidarity-shared interests. An injury to one IS an
injury to all.
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