Thursday, June 23, 2022

VOTE NO on Whatever Contract Unity Negotiates/ Resist UFT Cone of Silence, Calls for Open Bargaining

We simply cannot surrender our right to share with our coworkers information that affects their livelihood. We were elected to the Executive Board to amplify the needs of our members, not to make decisions unilaterally behind their backs....
Alex Jallot and Ronnie Almonte, UFT Ex Bd High School (as of July 1, 2022)
The cone of silence descends on the UFT negotiating committee. Some UFT Ex Bd members refuse to sign the Non Disclosure Agreement. 

I believe just about all contract issues have been pre-decided by the leadership already - including what they will accept. Don't hold your breath for inflation matching raises. Any hint of preventing this farce by open bargaining has been disparaged by Unity -- you don't bargain in public.

Until you do:

Turning the Tables: Transparent, Big, and Open Bargaining ...

Feb 8, 2022from Jane McAlevey ... How unions negotiate is a strategic choice. Seldom do union members experience the actual process of collective ...

Seven Steps to Opening Up Bargaining | Labor Notes

Open- versus Closed-Door Negotiations - JSTOR

UFT will put a giant version of the cone of silence over contract meetings.
 

 

 

 





 
 
 
Thursday, June 23, 2022

I've been mocking the UFT/Unity leadership over its faux negotiating committee farce for years.

Saturday, August 8, 2009
UFT Contract UFT Cast of Thousands Contract Committee
I raised some questions on the then 350 member Neg Comm, now expanded to as many as can fit in the cone of silence dome.

Questions on the Negotiation Committee: How are people chosen to be on this committee? Of the 350 committee members how many are in Unity Caucus? Does secrecy mean that Unity Caucus members don’t discuss the issues brought up for discussion among themselves? Are we to believe that the only discussion that takes place among Unity Caucus members is in the committee room?

If you think top level Unity don't discuss the issues beforehand, take a walk on the bridge you just bought.

In fact, I believe just about all contract issues have been pre-decided by the leadership and their main problem is how to filter the info out to the negotiating committee and how to do it to make it look democratic. Every committee will echo the election committee with a Unity majority. I like that there are people who want to be on the neg Comm even if having to sign the NDA and also that there are people who won't sign.
 
 
We know the contract will suck and many in the opposition will call for a Vote No campaign - in fact I'm starting the campaign right now -- oh, shit, retirees don't get to vote on the contract. You working stiffs have my proxy.

Some Unity slug will stop by to comment on how dumb I am.
 
 I urge people to accept the reality and just call for a NO VOTE NOW.

But most people connected to United for Change who are on the committee are signing the NDA - but we do have some newly elected Ex Bd people who were added to the negotiating committee but are refusing to sign and therefore will not be on the committee -- and they came under attack by ubber Unity Hack Richard Skibbens.  But who cares?
 
 
Here is the statement by these two members of MORE:
 

WE believe our union's contract should be open and transparent to all members and stakeholders (see the work of Jane McAlvey). 
 
Under the duress of our union leadership's decision to keep talks with management confidential. I am compelled to sign today's agreement because the interests of my chapter must still be represented in these negotiations.

As newly elected Executive Board members, we have been invited to join the union’s contract negotiating committee. In a time of pandemic and budget cuts, it’s critical that we bargain for better salaries, benefits, and working conditions.

As workplace leaders, we also believe that our union’s strength depends on making decisions collectively with openness and transparency. Unfortunately, the UFT has a long practice of requiring members (who are hand-picked) to sign a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) as a condition for serving on the negotiating committee. We oppose this policy because it prevents the membership from holding the committee accountable, puts pressure on the UFT to broker backroom deals with politicians rather than rely on the strength of the union membership, and thus undermines the union’s ability to win a strong contract. For this reason we oppose the NDA, and refuse to sign it as much as we would like to join the committee. We simply cannot surrender our right to share with our coworkers information that affects their livelihood. We were elected to the Executive Board to amplify the needs of our members, not to make decisions unilaterally behind their backs.

The upcoming negotiations with the city must be open and transparent. In this way the membership can be made aware of what’s at stake, can follow the progress of negotiations, and can be mobilized in moments where the city refuses to compromise. Our members are the union, and their activity is the source of its power. Open bargaining is the path to securing the working conditions we deserve, and the schools our students need.

Signed,

Alex Jallot, Ronnie Almonte

Ex Bd meetings will be fun again next year. 

 

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