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Quick Hit
by Progress Illinois
Thu Nov 1, 2012

Op-Ed: Unions Stand Up For The Middle Class

The following op-ed is written by Henry Bayer, executive director of American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Council 31.

Wherever we live and whatever political party we identify with, most Americans agree on a few basic things.

We believe that those who work hard should have decent pay, affordable health care, security in retirement and respect on the job — and that government should provide essential services, like good schools for our children, safe streets for our families and a safety net for the most vulnerable, including the elderly, disabled, at-risk kids and unemployed workers.

Despite this common-sense consensus in support of vital public services and the men and women who provide them, a chorus of corporate special interests are echoing extreme attacks on workers and their rights. And far too many politicians are listening.

Quick Hit
by Aricka Flowers
Tue Sep 18, 2012

Progressive Group Launches New Ad In Support Of CTU (VIDEO)

The Chicago Teachers Union House of Delegates is set to meet at 3 p.m. today to discuss, and likely vote on, the proposed deal hashed out by the bargaining teams of CTU and the Chicago Public Schools. As parents, students and teachers all wait to see when, and if, classes will resume, which they could as soon as tomorrow, the Progressive Change Campaign Committee (PCCC) is releasing an ad, set to hit Chicagoland airwaves immediately, thanking the teachers' union "for their fight for students and parents."

Regardless of what happens today with the House of Delegates' vote, PCCC officials say they will continue to run the ad as they see the Chicago teachers' strike as indicative of a national battle between unions and politicians, particularly conservatives like Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, who released a statement at the start of the strike blasting CTU.

Quick Hit
by Brandon Campbell
Sun Sep 16, 2012

CTU Strike: Union Park Rally Draws Union Leaders and Supporters (VIDEO)

A rally at Union Park brought out thousands of teachers, parents, and union supporters from Chicago, Wisconsin, Indiana and abroad as the school board and Chicago Teachers Union representatives continued to work on contract negotiations Saturday afternoon.

Union President Karen Lewis drew loud applause and chants of “Karen for Mayor” from the crowd as she took the stage at about 2:30 p.m.

Lewis said union negotiators were given a written framework for a contract on Friday, with details and completed language to be discussed on Sunday. But she said that doesn’t mean the strike is about to end.

“We are still on strike. We only have a framework for an agreement, not an agreement,” Lewis said. “Until you hear it from the CTU, we are on strike.”

Quick Hit
by Matthew Blake
Fri Sep 14, 2012

Some National Implications Of The CTU Strike

The Chicago Teachers Union strike could have a national impact in at least two key ways. It could reshape an increasingly confrontational relationship between elected officials and public employees. And the walkout could alter education policy, either disrupting the movement toward charter schools and test-based teacher evaluations – or ending concerted opposition to these programs.

PI Original
by Aricka Flowers
Wed Jun 6, 2012

The Bigger Picture Emerging From The Wisconsin Vote

One day after Wisconsin voters elected to keep Republican Gov. Scott Walker in office, making him the first governor in history to survive a recall election, politicos, the media and news junkies are all trying to discern what the end result means for November.