In the wee hours of Saturday morning, the legislature unexpectedly passed a state budget package that, if signed into law, would be catastrophic for you, your family and your community. This two-year fiscal blueprint rolls-back collective bargaining rights, eliminates good jobs and hikes middle and working class taxes.
The governor immediately responded with a pledge to veto the budget. But the same reactionary special interests who lobbied Republican lawmakers to produce the document are now pressuring him to sign it.
Every union member is at risk if this scheme becomes law:
- All state employees will lose their rights to negotiate healthcare and retirement security after the current SEBAC contract expires;
- PreK-12 teachers will pay a special tax on their pensions while the fund is allowed to remain unstable and vulnerable;
- Public school paraeducators and support staff can be replaced by unpaid volunteers that will be prioritized over district employees;
- Nurses and healthcare staff in our state's hospitals will be forced to treat patients with fewer resources due to Medicaid reductions;
- Healthcare professionals at UConn Health will face privatization now required at the facility;
- Staff at UConn will confront hundreds of millions in cuts to higher education services their students depend on; &
- Members with children in the state's largest and most diverse school districts will experience larger class sizes and loss of vital supports due to local education aid cuts.
Working families in Connecticut have more than paid our fair share to shore up our state's economy. Are you going to allow these politicians to make you pay more?
If the answer is no, take this first step in what must be a renewed fight for union members to protect Connecticut's quality of life. Let's make informing and engaging our colleagues on the job and our allies in the community a priority — and be "all in" to secure a better future.
More to come, and in solidarity,
President, AFT Connecticut
John Brady, RN
Executive Vice President, AFT Connecticut
First Vice President, AFT Connecticut
Secretary-Treasurer, AFT Connecticut