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A tale of two unions.

March 26, 2013

Al & Tammy 2

Tammy Vinson and Al Ramirez submit CORE nominating petitions.

Yesterday representatives of the Caucus of Rank and File Educators submitted 5,000 signatures that placed the names of current CTU President Karen Lewis and her CORE colleagues on the ballot for re-election in about a month.

The opposition, currently invisible in the fight against school closings, represents the group that was ousted by CORE in the last election.

The nominating petitions had five times the number of signatures required. They are nearly 20% of the CTU membership.

Tomorrow we will see why the current Chicago teacher union leadership has support that is deep and wide.

Thousands of teachers, students, parents and people from every neighborhood will fill the Daley Center across from City Hall and march to 125 Clark Street, the headquarters of the CPS board of education.

Our message: Every Chicago public school is our school. Support public schools. Don’t close them.

Barricades have already been erected.

As they demonstrated last Spring during the teachers’ strike, these are union leaders who know how to fight for their members, for our students and for our neighborhoods.

I could only wish for as much from the IEA leaders in Springfield.

In the lead up to votes last week in the General Assembly on our pensions not a word was heard from IEA leaders.

When questioned by members about the silence, IEA President Cinda Klickna would say how hard they were working.

She even chastised the members for not doing enough.

I have heard from more than one member who have been told by more than one state senator that these senators were given a green light to vote for Senate Bill 1 by the IEA.  I have been told that one senator told a constituent that the IEA was “out ahead of the We Are One coalition on this issue.”

Can I prove that? Do I have a smoking gun? Another Jonah Edelman video tape that documented the IEA’s sell-out of the members with their support for Senate Bill 7?

Nope.

But the silence from the IEA headquarters on Edwards Street in Springfield is deafening.

And the contrast between them and Chicago is stark.

Chicago teacher union leaders provide a vision reality of what is possible.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. Pats Mail permalink
    March 26, 2013 9:30 am

    “She even chastised the members for not doing enough”. Classic sell out. 1. Keep people in the dark. 2. Sell them out. 3. Blame them for not showing support you didn’t ask for.

    I’m afraid to have my union “at the table.” Pat Herrmann

    Sent from my iPhone

  2. March 26, 2013 10:06 am

    We have heard nothing from the IEA in weeks…not even an email with a link to contact legislators. Every piece of information I am getting is coming from the blogs/emails of concerned retired teachers and the IRTA. I am seriously considering not joining IEA-R after my membership expires.

    • Fred Klonsky permalink*
      March 26, 2013 10:11 am

      Please don’t do that. Find like-minded members. We are creating an IEA-R in the near north suburbs that the IEA leadership has allowed to go without for decades, even though it has among the largest concentration of retired IEA members in the state. We must take our union back.

  3. March 26, 2013 2:52 pm

    Robin, I felt the same way, but Fred is 100% correct on this one. Now let’s follow through on Fred’s last sentence.

  4. Brian Mooberry permalink
    March 26, 2013 9:46 pm

    I don’t know about the rest of you, but I get numerious emails daily from Janet Kilgus (Chairperson of IEA Retired) Jack Tucker (IEA Council The IEA Retire LEadership has been in contact with me over the past months. Maybe instead of spending all of your time complaining about IEA Leadership you should take action and inform members to take action. Remember WE ARE the IEA. If you aren’t getting the emails then maybe YOU should contact Janet Kilgus and get on her email list.

    Brian Mooberry
    President Northern Kane County IEA Retired

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