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AFT Retirees

There in a time of need

uft backpackWhen Superstorm Sandy had finished ravaging the East Coast, members of the United Federation of Teachers retiree chapter took action. UFT retiree chapter members were running an Election 2012 phone bank when Sandy struck in late October, but the devastation that affected New Yorkers prompted the union to turn the phone bank into a call center for UFT members in need. The retirees continued their involvement by participating in other activities to help victims of Sandy, such as lending a hand with stuffing 30,000 backpacks for students in need.

Read the full story at AFT.org

Fiscal cliff agreement is a temporary Band-Aid

capitol photoThe fiscal cliff agreement prevents tax increases for millions of Americans, extends unemployment insurance benefits for those struggling to find work, and provides extensions of essential tax credits for low-income and middle-class Americans. It does kick critical issues down the road, however, says AFT president Randi Weingarten in a letter to Congress. The agreement doesn't address across-the-board budget cuts under sequestration that will debilitate programs affecting the safety net for seniors, schools and our communities.

Read the AFT’s statement and letter to Congress

Find out more about what the agreement does

Legislators told to keep their pension promise

public employee pension rally

Thousands of Illinois state employees, teachers, higher education professionals, retirees and other union members gathered at the state Capitol in Springfield on Jan. 3 and 4 to insist that state lawmakers do the right thing for public employee pensions.

View the video


From grief to action

Creating safe, vibrant communities and safe sanctuaries for our children to learn and grow will require a balanced approach. From measures to prevent gun violence to increased mental health services and resources for schools, we all have roles to play in creating safe communities.

In her latest New York Times column, AFT president Randi Weingarten shares her experiences from Newtown, Conn., after the tragic events at Sandy Hook Elementary School, and calls for action on reducing gun violence and making our communities safer.  

Join us in standing up for safe communities across America

Read our union's recommendations on school safety

Urge Congress to pass reasonable legislation on guns

Schools that connect careers and learning

Chicago high schoolAFT president Randi Weingarten took time on Jan. 17 to visit staff, students and partners at Chicago high schools that are tailored to a basic truth: Students are more apt to stay engaged in learning when they draw the connection between their studies and the successful careers and lives they dream of having down the road.

Austin Polytechnical Academy prepares its students for future jobs in the manufacturing sector; the Instituto Health Sciences Career Academy seeks to prepare Chicago youth for success in the healthcare fields; and the Instituto Justice and Leadership Academy, features studies that allow students to play meaningful roles in community revitalization.

Read more on Weingarten’s visit

Ask "Dear Marci"

This month Emily from Pittsburgh asks: “I have Original Medicare and a Part D plan. What are my Medicare costs in 2013?”

Read what Marci has to say

Philadelphians rally against cuts and school closings

Philadelphia public school rallyPhiladelphians fighting to preserve vital public services and to keep the doors of the city's public schools open in the face of reckless calls for wholesale closings rallied on Jan. 19 in downtown Philadelphia. Late last year, the Philadelphia School Reform Commission hatched a plan to save money by closing 38 public schools. The Philadelphia Federation of Teachers, a co-organizer of the rally, has joined with the Philadelphia Coalition Advocating for Public Schools to advance an alternative proposal to shuttering school buildings. "In its bottom-line rush to close neighborhood schools, the [commission] is turning its back on the parents, students and communities that will be affected by these closures," PFT president Jerry Jordan warned.

"Let's fix schools, and let's make sure we invest in kids rather than de-invest," AFT president Randi Weingarten told rally participants.

Read more at AFT.org

January2012

In This Issue

There in a time of need

Fiscal cliff is a Band-Aid 

From grief to action 

Connecting schools and careers

Philadelphians fight back

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