Saturday, December 5, 2015

UPDATED: How Many Unity Slugs Does it Take to Run an Election? UFT Election Committee Formed

And the answer is . .....

A UFT election committee has been formed.

The members serving are:

Unity Caucus: Amy Arundell, Chair; Dwayne Clark, Ellen Driesen, Paul Egan, Washington Sanchez*, Mary Vaccaro

MORE/New Action: Kit Wainer, Michael Shulman

Solidarity: Quinn Zannoni

This committee makes the decisions governing election procedures. Meaning Unity makes the decisions because they get 6 people and can outvote the others.

Some guesses about the election timetable.

Jan. 13 Del Ass: Petitions are made available.
Each Caucus has about 6 weeks to complete the process of petitioning, which, unless you are running a minimal slate, is a royal pain in the ass. Over the years we have discussions as to whether to try to run hundreds of people or a smaller slate to make petitioning more manageable.

Expect ballots to go out in early- mid-March and returned 3 weeks later.

This is the official opening of the election campaign and until the day the ballots are counted every UFT member has the right to go into any school and put material in the mailboxes.

[I have never accepted this judgement and go into schools to put stuff in mail boxes when I can get in. And I often can.]

In reality, schools are not always notified by the DOE that you have that right - the Unity crew is perfectly happy with that since they have the district reps stuff mailboxes with glossy Unity election material bragging how great Mulgrew is in schools where they don't have anyone.

So when you go in you often are told you have no right - often by a Unity chapter leader.

Then you call the UFT to complain and they call the DOE to tell the school you have the right which can take a few days and then you have to go back.
And then you find that a Unity slug - like Patti Crispino - pulls all your stuff out of the mailboxes. Or tells Security not to let you in again.

Very important for our reps to raise immediately at this meeting: 
Notifying every principal that starting Jan. 13 (if that is the day petitions are released) through the day ballots are counted in April or May that we have the right to go into schools to put materials directly into mailboxes. Not leave it with someone, etc.

We need to stress this point time and again so our people do not waste time arguing with secretaries or having to come back.

We also need the UFT to notify all chapter leaders of this fact so we don't get Unity people claiming we don't have the right.
Announcements must be made at the DA and in the NY Teacher.
Also - the use of district reps who are UFT employees for stuffing mailboxes should be raised.

Naturally, you have the right to hand out lit in your own schools at any time - though your chapter leader may tell you you don't.

*You'll notice my favorite Unity whipping boy slug/goon, Washington Sanchez. Now there's a fair and balanced guy. Putting this guy on this committee is an insult to every UFT member. XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

Due to my respect for James Eterno (see his comment below) I removed some of the comments about Washington Sanchez. James is a very forgiving guy. Washington was one of the goons who tried to stop James from watching the vote at the NYSUT 2014 RA at the Hilton - when Sanchez tried to stop me I ignored him and he kept confronting me until Emil Pietromanco broke it up.

He was also the guy who confronted my at the AFT convention in Seattle for attending a Progressive Caucus meeting - assuming I had crashed it when in fact I had paid my $25 to join. When he appoints himself as Sargent at arms and plays the part of a goon he will not escape from scrutiny.


  1. Norm-I have nothing but the deepest respect for you and all you have done for teachers and the union. As a retiree, you gain nothing personally by staying involved in helping the union cause. In writing these posts and criticizing union leadership, we sometimes forget that there are real people out there who take what we say seriously. These people have friends and families too.

    I spoke to Washington Sanchez today and he is deeply offended by this post and the last paragraph in particular. He believes it is a personal attack and I agree with him. Even if Washington did write the anonymous posts you refer to, which he strongly denies, they were written anonymously and therefore should remain anonymous. I don't think our role as bloggers should be to "out" Unity members who might troll our blogs even if we have a hunch on who might be doing it. Attributing comments to a person who denies them crosses a line. Let's try to keep our disagreements political and not resort to personal attacks.

    For the record, I have known Washington for many years and while we often disagree on union policy, I have never once heard remarks from him that were dumb, juvenile, sexist.

  2. James is such a class act, Norm and you look so small and mean in comparison. First off one can still read the "deleted comment" through the cross off. And you just piled more abuse on WS in response to James' request that you remove it. Worst of all you cite an example of something done to James, which he has chosen to let go. So, ask yourself who you have insulted and disrespected in this post. The answer is James. Pretty shabby performance.

    1. Guilty as charged. I said James is a better man than me. I had too many confrontations with the arrogant POS to let things pass. Keep your Unity goons under control.

    2. James and Norm shouldn't let it go. Unity has all the power it has misused and abused. There is nothing he can say that is too bad about you. When Friedrichs comes can't wait to see WS back in the classroom. That alone may be worth losing.

    3. Unity slugs will defend jack the ripper.

  3. Unity's Mr. Sanchez tries to remove people who want to view a vote count and he's upset with name calling? He should be more concerned with his own behavior and his loyalty to a caucus that encourages such behavior. Don't sell yourself short, Norm. I'm sure James is a good man but I would argue that the man who stood his ground and refused to be removed is the better man. Roseanne McCosh - PS 8

    1. Thanks Roseanne. I don't go after all that many Unity people who generally treat me OK. This guy at many DAs when I was at the door was arrogant, nasty, mocking, etc. And funny thing is when he first became chapter leader offered to distribute Ed Notes at Newtown HS until I realized he had gone over to the dark side. At AFT2010 I paid for my membership in Progressive Caucus, the Unity of the AFT but open to all. People in Unity were surprised I was there but some said hello and were friendly. Michael Mendel greeted me warmly. Randi at some point came over to chat. I know a lot of that is phony but it was Sanchez who chose to come over and confront me and tell me I had to leave. Another Unity guy came over with him - I think I remember who he is but am not sure so I won't name him. They then got Leroy Barr who wanted to escort me out. I refused - call the official sergeant at arms I told them as they had no right or role to get involved. They have people at the door to make sure you belong. When she came over I showed her my credentials.
      Fact is I will never stop going after people who act like goons. In the late 90s they had a real goon squad run by Gary Sprung who had them dump Ed Notes in the garbage. It got to the point where I basically confronted Gary in the lobby at a DA - and Tom Pappas, his boss, came over to tell us to make up. It never happened again and in fact I and Gary, who many Unity people feared and even hated, became very friendly over the years - to the point where other Unity people started criticizing him for being too buddy buddy with me. I got to like Gary and even other Unity people used to say how they didn't like him. One thing about Gary - he put on the best food spreads at Ex Bd meetings and when I asked him why he ordered so much he said all extras went to food kitchens after the meeting.


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