(Article changed on September 16, 2012 at 01:55)
Chicago Teachers Union Sellout
Corrupt union bosses betray their members.
by Stephen Lendman
It's in the air. You can smell and taste it. It's not pleasant. Union bosses and city officials struck a deal. A previous article headlined Capitulation in Chicago?
Final details aren't known, but bet on it. It's baked in the cake. By the time this article circulates, it may be official. It practically is now.
Unions in Chicago and across America ill represented rank-and-file members for decades. Corporate and government negotiators know it. Beating labor means staying hardline and waiting them out. They'll cave like they always do.
Months of discussions produced stalemate. On September 10, teachers walked out. Board of Education (BoE) and Chicago Public Schools (CPS) officials spurned them on core issues. Resolving them in five days reveals sellout.
Saving public education is key. It's a fundamental right. It's on the chopping block for elimination. Commodifying it as another business profit center is planned.
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel is hellbent on doing it. Doing so means placing bottom line priorities over teaching and learning.
Schools aren't businesses. Education isn't a product. It's a bedrock societal obligation. Keeping it out of profiteer hands is essential. Teachers are on their own to save it. It's also up to them to preserve their jobs with decent pay and benefits, as well as futures for Chicago kids.
Union bosses think sacrificing what's too important to lose doesn't matter as long as their welfare is secure. There's still a chance to beat them. Grassroots efforts alone can do it. Final contract terms aren't approved.
Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) president Karen Lewis wants House of Delegates approval fast. They're the CTU's governing body. Members elect them. They number over 700. Every city school is represented.
All union members have final say. Tallying their votes will take days. Once strike action ends and classes resume, it'll be too late to say no deal. Saying it now crucial. Later won't matter. Perhaps 24 hours means the difference between victory and defeat.
On September 15, the Chicago Tribune headlined "Tentative deal reached with striking Chicago teachers," saying:
Contract terms are agreed on. A tentative deal was struck. A City Hall source said school officials and union bosses reached a "framework with all points resolved."