National Nurses United show solidarity with striking Chicago teachers
National Nurses United (NNU), the largest union and professional association of registered nurses in the United States and a Public Services International affiliate, is mobilizing in support of the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) after 30,000 teachers walked off the job to protect public education.
The CTU has been in negotiations for months for a new contract with the Chicago Board of Education, made up of appointees hand-picked by Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel. The teachers are asking for appropriate staffing levels, job security for qualified teachers, smaller class sizes and a better school day with Art, Music and World Language instruction. The Board of education is pushing to eliminate pay increases for service and wants to evaluate teachers based on student test scores. The Board is also proposing to slash many other long-standing rights.
In a letter to the Chicago Teachers Union, Deborah Burger, Karen Higgins and Jean Ross (the three co-presidents of the NNU), congratulated the teachers for their “strong stance for quality public education at a time when teachers and public education, and all working people, are under assault in so many corners ...”
The NNU has called on its members and supporters to donate to the CTU Solidarity Fund. Also, nurses are being urged to call J.C. Brizard the CEO of Chicago Public Schools (tel. +1 773 553 1500) and Mayor Emanuel (tel +1 312 744 3300) to tell them that the teachers’ demands should be met for the sake of quality public education.