AFT-Wisconsin President Kim Kohlhaas, a teacher in the Superior School District, issued the following statement today in response to Scott Walker's announcement that he is ending his presidential campaign:
"Today marks the end of Scott Walker's illusions that the American people want to buy what he's selling. AFT-Wisconsin members and other working Wisconsinites have been getting the word out about the damage that Walker has done to this state...
In response to attacks by Wisconsin Republicans on academic freedom in the University of Wisconsin System, the AFT-Wisconsin Higher Education Council has drafted a statement calling on the UW System Regents and chancellors to uphold protections for academic staff and tenure-track faculty that ensure academic freedom and high quality research and education at every UW System institution. UW System employees are encouraged to print the statement and display it in their workplaces. AFT-Wisconsin members are also circulating a petition in support of the statement; to obtain a copy of the
"It's hard to miss the rumble out in Wisconsin: The battle between labor and its union-bashing foes has been loud and long. But for faculty and staff of public colleges and universities, the Wisconsin story is even worse... 'People have been demoralized, and everyone recognizes the new challenges, but it has galvanized a lot of people to become active in the union,' says [UW-Green Bay union member Jon] Shelton."
I'm proud to share with you a joint statement from Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers, and Sara Goldrick-Rab, professor of educational policy studies and sociology at UW-Madison and a member of AFT local 223, United Faculty and Academic Staff. Randi and Sara, two committed educators and unionists, strongly condemn Scott Walker's attacks on higher education, which will slash essential state funding and threaten the bedrock of academic freedom upon which higher education depends. Please share this statement widely and help us get the word out about the danger facing every university in the UW System, from Superior to Milwaukee.
That's the provocative title of an article by Washington Post education reporter Valerie Strauss, who provides a comprehensive overview of the relentless assault on public education in Wisconsin. Strauss notes that for the first time in over 20 years, the legislature will not be increasing state aid for PK-12 education to at least keep up with inflation, in addition to further draining public education funds by expanding the statewide voucher program that takes money from public school students and sends it to unaccountable private and charter schools. And Wisconsin is one of only six states
The results are in, and the message is clear: strong unions matter. Once again, every AFT-Wisconsin local union that pursued recertification was victorious, showing that even with the game rigged, union members still know how to organize for success. (You can read AFT-Wisconsin's press release by clicking "more" below.) Congratulations to members of the following AFT-Wisconsin local unions for their election victories!
Local 212 - faculty and PSRP at Milwaukee Area Technical College
Local 243 - full-time faculty and PSRP at Madison Area Technical College
Local 395 - faculty at Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College
Local 2308 - faculty at Blackhawk Technical College
Local 3338 - faculty at Moraine Park Technical College
Local 3605 - faculty, non-teaching professionals, and PSRP at Western Technical College
Local 4019 - PSRP at Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College
Local 6100 - part-time faculty at Madison Area Technical College
Governor Scott Walker broke yet another promise to working Wisconsinites this morning by signing so-called “right to work” legislation. After repeatedly stating that it was not a priority, that private sector unions were essential partners in economic recovery, and that the bill would never make it to his desk, he signed the bill gleefully, showing yet again that he’s willing to betray Wisconsin as many times as it takes in service to his personal political aspirations. But we’re not surprised; we’ve come to expect this from Scott Walker. We all know what Scott Walker’s promises are worth. And
Scores of AFT-Wisconsin members joined the thousands of Wisconsinites that converged on the Capitol on Tuesday, Feb. 24, to protest legislation designed to weaken private sector unions. (Be sure to check out our post on what you can do to stop so-called "right to work" legislation!) And while union members and community supporters rallied outside, many more were making their voices heard inside the Capitol, registering their opposition to the bill, offering testimony about why it's wrong for Wisconsin, and holding a Solidarity Singalong in the rotunda.