AFT-Oregon gathered faculty, students, staff, union and community advocates to brainstorm on ways to help solve the dire problem of rising student debt, as the state continues the trend of disinvestment in Oregon’s public higher education institutions. The session was part of AFT-Oregon’s effort to engage the public and elected leaders in finding a solution to this issue which affects our workplaces, communities and economy.
Sitton Elementary School in North Portland is one of 21 schools nationwide to receive a $5,000 AFL-CIO Adopt-A-School grant.
Trumka told delegates to the AFL-CIO convention that union workers must join with the millions more who are without representation to build real power and take back America.
"Our job is to create a new working class movement--strong enough to lift all workers in this country," he said. CLICK HERE to view his keynote speech to delegates in September, 2013.
AFT-Oregon members joined their local labor councils to celebrate workers in annual labor day picnics. Vickie Brumit, Local 3972 (SWOCCCF) president attended the Coos Bay/North Bend celebration.
“It was wonderful to see our Local members increase their participation by attending this important event,” said Brumit. “We had great music, kids’ games—a good time was had by all. Each year, we also do a food drive at the picnic, and offer a free meal to needy families in the community.”
On the Governor’s desk is House Bill 290B, which gives pay equity to nurse practitioners and physician assistants. The bill, which was a priority for AFT affiliated Oregon Nurses Association, requires private health care insurance companies to reimburse nurse practitioners and physician assistants the same rate when providing identical mental health and primary care services.
Faculty members of Local 2278 (WOUFT) joined with students and staff at Western Oregon University to hold a unity rally on May 22, 2013. Emily Plec, Local 2278 (WOUFT) President said the goal of the event was to "alter the 'divide and conquer' mentality that it’s either student tuition or employee wages. That one has to come at expense of the other.”
OSU research assistants have overwhelmingly designated AFT Local 6069, Coalition of Graduate Employees (CGE) as their union representative in an election conducted by the Employment Relations Board (ERB). Inclusion of research assistants doubles the CGE bargaining unit to some 1,700, covering all OSU graduate employees. Graduate employees teach and assist in teaching undergraduate and graduate courses and perform valuable research in science, engineering, humanities, and many other fields.
“Teacher for a Day” in Portland Public Schools provided AFT-Oregon President David Rives with the opportunity to meet Local 111 (PFSP) members at Roosevelt High School, and observe their daily routine at a K-12 school. Public leaders and those such as Rives who serve on public boards were invited to spend time in a classroom with teachers and educational assistants.
The AFT has signed on as a proud partner of the LGBT Healthcare Bill of Rights, joining more than 80 LGBT and progressive organizations that support the initiative to raise awareness of LGBT rights and empower patients to demand high-quality care.