Monday, October 30, 2017

UFT Elections 2019: Unity Caucus Goes Behind Back of Chapter Leaders

The upshot of this dumb move is that it may very well turn out that Arthur and a few pals will be the only ones to greet the veeps. Because after listening to DOE bullshit all the time, there's nothing teachers want to do more than to stay after school to listen to bullshit from the UFT.
Non-Unity Chapter Leader tee-shirt
I read with disgust on Saturday Arthur Goldstein's post as Unity Caucus (Michael Mulgrew's political party that runs the UFT) has arranged to do a UFT event in a school without first going through the Chapter Leader.... It seems the two UFT High School Vice Presidents have set up a Meet the Vice Presidents afternoon for Francis Lewis High School, where Arthur is Chapter Leader, but they have not asked for his ok. To put it another way, the Unity Vice Presidents have invited themselves into Francis Lewis.....James Eterno, ICE Blog, UFT CHAPTER LEADERS ARE NO LONGER THE UNION IN SCHOOLS

Yesterday, a Unity rep who went behind my back to arrange an event in my school told me he was sorry that I "felt" high school teachers have no representation in NYSUT and AFT. Here's the thing--it's not something I "feel." It's something, period. And when UFT Unity ignores elected chapter leaders to do any damn thing they feel like, it's counterproductive and stupid on multiple levels... Arthur Goldstein, Unity Fiddles While High Schools Unrepresented
The two posts by Arthur and James
get into some of the details of this Unity caper (also see Arthur's 975), where the principal was contacted directly by people in the UFT without going through the chapter leader about holding a meeting at the school with two UFT Vice-Presidents - HSVP - even though James Eterno got more HS votes than her -- and Sterling Roberson -- and the Queens HS District Rep James Vasquez.

What James and Arthur don't get into is the reasons why, leaving to speculation that this was another stupid oversight on the part of the Queens borough office. That is the way union officials are playing it. They are saying they are so sorry.

Don't believe that this was just a fuck up but standard modus operendi by Unity when it comes to dealing with people not on their team.

This is not an oversight but an intentional attempt to do an end run around Arthur and get to the people in his school directly. How do we know this? When Arthur asked someone in the Queens office why they wanted to know how many seats his auditorium held she wouldn't tell him -- but nothing less than I expected from this Unity  Caucus apparatchik slug who gained her position through nepotism. (Yes I had my own slimy negative experience with her.)

Here is a comment from James' blog showing it happens all the time:
I work in Brooklyn and my friends have District Rep's who openly undermine the Cl's and members. They go into the school with out even letting the CL know, start problems with the principal and leave. Some always take the principals position and help them violate our contract. Some act as if the CL and members work for them. 
Over the years other ICE/MORE chapter leaders have faced the same story. Last year an elementary MORE CL in Manhattan who had defeated a Unity slug CL in the 2015 elections found that the union was setting up a meeting in her school without her participation.

This is about the continued embarrassing loss by Unity of the high schools in most elections over the past 32 years and the fact they have to face the annoyance factor of the HS MORE/NA reps challenging and questioning  them every two weeks at EB meetings and bringing rank and filers to these meetings.

We made it clear that the key votes for Arthur and MORE in a close election came from his very large high school -- I went there to help Arthur flush out the vote -- and Unity wants a back door in by sending Janella, who if she runs for HS VP in 2019 may face another loss. So maybe a personal appearance might get some people to vote for Unity. Every vote counts.

Now what makes these people running our union so stupid is that if they had asked Arthur he would probably have worked with them to welcome them to the school. Arthur won a union award yesterday for high COPE contributions in his school. And he

The upshot of this dumb move is that it may very well turn out that Arthur and a few pals will be the only ones to greet the veeps. Because after listening to DOE bullshit all the time, there's nothing teachers want to do more than to stay after school to listen to bullshit from the UFT.

Some more blog comments:
Well the UFT has learnt deception well from the DNC. They know how to be undemocratic and authoritarian, maybe it's time that High School teachers form their own union!

Michael Fiorillo said...
Boy, are these people in for a shock post-Janus. They can't even perceive the need to work with people who, while not in their caucus, are the one's who keep the union alive at the school level.
With Amy Arundell now running the Queens UFT borough office one would have hoped the some of the sleaziness associated with that borough office over the years would not be rearing its ugly head. Just like the leadership has said teachers need to be accountable let's hold union officials accountable.

Afterburn - more from Eterno
Arthur Goldstein represents the UFT at Francis Lewis High School. If you want to do a Meet the Vice Presidents event there, you should go through Arthur and he should be approving it and arranging it with the Principal, not you or your people.
This is just the latest slap in the face of a school union representative that shows how the UFT no longer functions as a labor union but is a top-down organization that has completely lost touch with how a union is a democratic organization.

The UFT members at Francis Lewis and the high school teachers citywide have elected Arthur Goldstein to be their representative at the school and Executive Board level. Ms. Hinds and Mr. Roberson only have their VP jobs because middle school teachers, elementary school teachers, non-teachers in the UFT and retirees are allowed to vote for the High School VPs. High school teachers did not elect these two. Unity's candidates lost the High School Division by 5 percentage points in 2016.

Sterling and Janella should show professional respect for Arthur, who was elected by a majority who voted in his school and the high school division, by letting him decide if there should be a meet the Vice Presidents event in his school.

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