Striking Bus Drivers Rally at City Hall: NY1 News reports that over 1,000 New York City school bus drivers and matrons assembled in front of City Hall yesterday afternoon, calling on Mayor Bloomberg's office to become involved in the now four-week old strike.
"We're here today for our job protection, our job security. This is what we need," said a member of ATU Local 1181. "We've been having it for 33 years. We need this. If not, we won't have a job."
Union members first began picketing almost a month ago to demand job protection language in any new labor deal. However, the city has maintained that such job protection language is illegal and has further called for the drivers to negotiate directly with the private companies that hire them.
Saginaw Police Negotiations at Impasse: Mark Tower of MLive reports that negotiations between the city of Saginaw and the local Police Officer's union over a new contract have broken down. City staff have told local media that there are no new meetings scheduled between the two parties. However, leaders in neighboring cities have encouraged the parties to get back to the table.
"Get the unions involved," [Pontiac Mayor Leon] Jukowski said. "It's going to be much easier if this is something that is negotiated."
The talks began last year in an effort to close a $3.2 million budget shortfall before July, 2013. We will keep you posted as the situation develops further.
More and More Unions Popping Up at Charter Schools: AFT News writes that three new unions have won recognition at charter schools in New York State, Los Angeles, and Detroit. The Detroit election occurred on February 7, 2013, and was the first union victory since the National Labor Relations Board ruled that charter schools should be considered private-sector employers for the purpose of collective bargaining.
The ballot outcome of the Feb. 7 election was 88 for the union, 39 opposed. Said Becky Wilinski, a middle school social studies teacher at Chavez Academy, "We are reminding Gov. Snyder that workers in Michigan still have the right to say 'union, yes!'"
The New York and Los Angeles unions received voluntary recognition after administrators received union petitions at both schools. This recent spate of union victories at charter schools across the country may be a sign of things to come in the wake of the Board's December ruling. We at @LRToday will certainly keep you posted.