Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Addendum: Independent Teacher Revolts Against AFT and NEA

I posted this Antonucci piece yesterday: Antonucci - Oklahoma Teachers Want to Impeach NEA Union Officer and Change to AFT - A WTF Moment

I sent the article out to the MORE and ICE Listserves with this addendum:

Imagine Larry Cagle at AFT conventions. I would go to Pittsburgh this July just to meet him.
Can Larry come here and organize against Mulgrew?

This article may be an interesting pre-cursor of things to come.
We have heard much about the lessons of the red states for us here in NYC.

I'm sorry we never got to to deeper in our discussion at the MORE meeting this past Saturday but would suggest topics like the one below are worth exploring at the May meeting.

A What if?

Back in the fall when MORE began its Janus campaign of staying in the union, I raised the idea that people who might leave the UFT or call for leaving the UFT might actually organize something independent - it wouldn't be easy but it is possible.

The red state revolts are also revolts against the NEA and AFT.
At the Jacobin event I spoke to one of the WV teachers -- they were all NEA I think - and he said that they were being discouraged from working even with their own AFT colleagues in their own schools.
So underlining a lot of what is going on in those states is some competition between the AFT and NEA which may be more intense in right to work states.
In OK I think Randi has been pretty slick and we know she knows how to play people. So Larry Cagle may be fooled -- or just using her.
A big chunk of our dues goes to the AFT and come Janus these issues may come up.

After all our pals in the FMPR in Puerto Rico took their union out of the AFT over 10 years ago, with Raphy calling them blood-suckers.

At last summer's early July MORE event which Mike and I organized and was attended by 35 people, there was a heated discussion about the high school teachers doing a separation from the UFT -- given that they have voted anti-Unity for most of the past 30 years.

Imagine if some group in the UFT post-Janus actually went out and did what Larry Cagle did in Oklahoma and some of the WV and Ky people did and get enough signatures in the high schools to cause a bargaining election? James has floated this idea on the ICEUFT blog.

All balls are in the air.

I'd been thinking that with recent events organizing in the union and beyond here in NYC, with the power of Unity Caucus and a weak opposition that never gets a toe hold, is a dead end. Maybe not.
And here I was looking forward to some easier retirement years. Maybe not.

1 comment:

  1. Be careful what you wish for Oklahoma teachers. The AFT may be more trouble than it is worth.

    Abigail Shure


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