I’ve been over on the Washington City Paper discussing union issues. Sometimes, you have to bring the discussion to where the anti-union folks are.
In Loose Lips latest installment of the saga that is the Fenty administrations’ snubbing of all things union, we have this little ditty about a panel Fenty and Rhee participated:
Rhee told the crowd that she expects to have negotiations on the reform contract concluded within two weeks and ready for a vote by the Washington Teachers’ Union membership, LL has been told.
Her comments came during a panel discussion on education reform here in Denver with Michael Bennet, superintendent of Denver’s public schools, and other public education reform leaders. On a separate panel, Mayor Adrian M. Fenty spoke about his takeover of DCPS with New York City schools chief Joel I. Klein, Newark Mayor Cory Booker, former Colorado Gov. Roy Romer, and others. The event was sponsored by a coalition of more than three dozen education reform and charter school organizations.
So in reading this little snippet, did you notice anything missing?
I did. Teachers and their unions.
So, me being the meek, mild mannered, and quiet unionist that I am asked Loose Lips if there were any unions there, here’s his response:
Mike DeBonis Says:
August 25th, 2008 at 3:23 pm
Nope, no union folks on the panel, and didn’t seem to be any union folks there at all, from what I was told. BTW, the AFT is a “platinum-level” sponsor of the convention and prez Randi Weingarten will be addressing the floor this evening.
Well, that sort of says a lot about this panel, doesn’t it?
To me, it says that Fenty doesn’t much care about workers, which includes teachers, or the voice of those workers represented by their unions. Oh, yeah, and I said as much in my follow up comment:
Thanks for the update Mike. All workers need a voice, no matter what field. Unions aren’t just for laborers (LiUNA), Electricians (IBEW), writers (WGA) or casino workers (UAW), it’s also for teachers (NEA, AFT, etc…) nurses (SEIU, CNA), Engineers (BLE, IUOE), county child support workers (Teamsters, AFSCME), even actors (SAG). To have an education forum and to not have any unions on the panel ESPECIALLY the very EDUCATION REFORM minded Randi Weingarten is a travesty. But to be an elected Democratic official to sit on such a panel is tantamount to being in your face anti-union. Something Rhee and Fenty seem to be courting as a mantra of theirs.
Perhaps if you're really really good, Fenty will bring his anti-union self to your town, too!!