Wednesday, March 2, 2011
LAE Shows Support for Colleagues in Wisconsin
Board members Vickie Jacquet and Rachel Gifford rally for Wisconsin during a trip to Washington D.C.
The NEA family has come out in full force to support our colleagues in Wisconsin, as well as those in Idaho, Indiana, New Jersey, Ohio and Tennessee, who are also facing unprecedented threats.
Governor Scott Walker’s proposed legislation strips away worker rights and destroys the collaborative partnerships that have been established between labor and management in Wisconsin – the nation's oldest collective bargaining state. The protest is not about pay and benefits; it’s not about pensions and health care. This protest is about public sector employees retaining a voice in their profession and Wisconsin's future.
The people of Wisconsin are asking the governor and legislature to hear them out - and work with them to find bipartisan solutions that will address Wisconsin's challenges. Silencing the voices of public sector employees by busting up their unions is not a going to help the state move forward; it will only divide its people.
What is happening right now is historic. Tens of thousands of citizens are gathering in unprecedented numbers and speaking out to show their support for the state's public servants. They are voicing support for the third grade teacher who stays late to help a student with math. They are voicing support for nurses who work every day to care for patients and the firefighters who keep us safe. These public workers are on the front-lines everyday to support us - and they should have a say in their profession.
As all eyes continue to be on Wisconsin, LAE urges you to stay informed. Remember to talk about our collective fights and the attacks on the hard working teachers and public sector employees of our nation. Lend your voice to help us fight this battle. LAE has sent a letter of support to the WEAC team; we encourage you to do the same. Email President Mary Bell (firstname.lastname@example.org) with any words of encouragement. Sign any petitions in favor of collective bargaining and public sector workers. You can start by logging onto NEA’s Education Votes website educationvotes.nea.org/nationalpetition. Email information about local or state solidarity actions to email@example.com. Wear “Red for Ed" every Tuesday this spring. Spread the word in any way you can.
We are leaders in this national fight for working people. We are in this fight together; let's take action together. We need to win this fight for educators and public sector employees across the nation.