March 4, 2018
Supreme Court hears arguments in key case for working families
Thousands of working people rallied on the steps of the Supreme Court and around the country on Feb 26 as the justices heard oral arguments in Janus v. AFSCME Council 31, a case with far-reaching implications for working families and the entire labor movement. “The corporate special interests behind this case are dead set on eliminating the rights and freedoms of working people to organize, to negotiate collectively and to have any voice in working to better their lives,” said NEA President Lily Eskelsen García. “This is a blatant slap in the face of educators, nurses, firefighters, police officers and all public servants who make our communities strong and safe.” The Supreme Court is expected to issue a ruling by late June or early July.
Tell Congress to take common-sense steps to prevent gun violence
Inspired by the courageous students of Parkland, Florida, educators and families all across America are renewing their call for common-sense steps to keep our schools and communities safe. Meanwhile, President Trump proposed arming teachers who are “firearms adept & have annual training.” NEA President Lily Eskelsen Garcíaresponded, “Parents and educators overwhelmingly reject the idea of arming school staff. Educators need to be focused on teaching our students. We need solutions that will keep guns out of the hands of those who want to use them to massacre innocent children and educators.” In response to this growing problem, April 20 will be a national day of action against gun violence. For details, go to http://protectourschools.com. And click on the take action button to urge members of Congress to take common-sense steps to prevent gun violence – now!
Keep fighting as DACA remains in effect – for now
The Supreme Court rejected the Trump administration’s request to bypass lower courts and expedite an appeal hearing to end Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals (DACA) on March 5. Two federal judges – in San Francisco and Brooklyn – have ruled that DACA must continue while the courts hear challenges to the president’s decision to end it. The appeals process could take many months, during which Dreamers will remain in limbo, which is why we continue to push for a permanent legislative solution. NEA supports the bipartisan Dream Act of 2017 (S. 1615/H.R. 3440) as well as immediate action to address the current crisis – for example, a Dreamer fix combined with reasonable border security measures. Click on the take action button and tell Congress to pass the Dream Act now!
Urge Congress to increase education funding
The two-year budget agreement reached earlier this month established overall funding levels. Now, Congress is focused on divvying up the funding pie – how much to spend on individual programs. We need to keep advocating for more education dollars, including significant increases in Title I, Title II, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), and other programs that target the students most in need. Click on the take action button and tell Congress to invest in education.
Cheers and Jeers
Reps. Bobby Scott (D-VA), Gregorio Sablan (D-MP), Marcia Fudge (D-OH), and Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR) for speaking about the need to address gun violence in schools at a House Education and the Workforce Committee hearing
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (CA) and Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer (MD) supporting public employees’ right to unionize and bargain collectively
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