West Sonoma County Teachers Association Goes On Strike Wednesday
Following intimidation and scare tactics and a final offer that would send many veteran teachers home with less money WSCTA has officially notified WSCUHSD of their intent to strike on Wednesday, November 13th.
After going a year without a contract, the Fact-Finder agreed with the teachers on the need for a 12% raise over three years, but also suggested a cap to benefits. The teachers’ original ask was for 12%, and they are sticking to it, without a cap to benefits. The district lawyer, Paul Boylan, is being paid well to say the district can’t afford the raise. Those paying attention recognize his name as working with other local districts making the news with negotiation conflicts.
We know that budgets are based on priorities, and it is time for those teaching in expensive Sonoma County to stand together to raise our living and working conditions.
Sonoma West Newspaper Article
WSCTA FB Page
RED FOR ED Wednesday!
SRTA is having Red For Ed solidarity action on Wednesday in support of WSCTA. Please wear Red to school. Take a picture with your colleagues in red and post it to social media. Please tag @WeAreSRTA and #WeAreSRTA as well as #WeAreWSCTA so that we can share that support publicly.
You can print and hold these We Support WSCTA signs if you like. They also look great in your car window. Click for JPG Version, PDF Version
Union Busting Alert in West Sonoma County
Lily Smedshammer, the WSCTA President was served with 2 lawsuits, filed on behalf of WSCUHSD at her home. Lawsuit #1 seeks to break WSCTA solidarity and illegally stop a group of their Special Ed teachers from exercising their protected right to strike. Lawsuit #2 seeks to stop WSCTA from striking NEAR school property. These frivolous lawsuits are a violation of their right to strike and an attempt to weaken their line by dividing their bargaining unit and threatening their ability to assemble on public property. The injunction will be before the court Tuesday morning from 8-10 am.
SRTA Stands with WSCTA
Do something to support this growing movement of teachers standing up for themselves and their students. Attend their fundraiser, or donate online. Stand with them on the picket line. Visit them on the picket line and provide verbal support or sustenance. Email their board members asking for a long overdue fair contract. The impact of the broader community supporting the prioritization of teachers is what makes the difference. Your actions and or voice are needed in this effort. Show up at the board meeting at the El Molino library at 6 pm Wednesday, and/or email their Board member (emails are below.)
Tomorrow, Monday Nov. 11th 2pm at Hopmunk Tavern in Sebastopol
Your $20+ donation gets you a drink, appetizers, and community. The teachers of West Sonoma County need this support to fund strike expenses and provide some relief to members with immediate salary stress. All unused proceeds will be donated to the Ed Foundations at El Molino and Analy High Schools!
WSCTA Fundraiser Facebook Event for the fundraiser
If you can’t make the fundraiser tomorrow but would like to support WSCTA’s strike fund you can donate through GoFundMe.
WSCTA Strike Fund - GoFundMe
Tell the WSCUHSD to come to the table with an offer the teachers can accept
Email the West Sonoma County Union High School District school board members to demand a fair contract now for their teachers. Below are their email addresses:
Rsvp to margaretbuhn at sbcglobal.net
Come together Friday, Sept 6th 4:00 – 5:30pm
Appetizers will be served
Epicenter - Champions Hall
3215 Coffey Ln,
Santa Rosa, CA 95403, USA
An invitation went out in a recent SRTA Monday Update to attend a Friday night dinner put on by North Bay Jobs with Justice (NBJWJ). SRTA only recently voted to affiliate our union with NBJWJ, and I had very little idea what to expect from this event. Out of curiosity, I requested one of the tickets, and set off to see what the group was all about.
The purpose of the evening was to both raise money for the organization and to acknowledge members who have worked for, and won improved living and working conditions for north bay residents. It was clear that this event was possible because enough people believed in the group, and were willing to donate time, money, and the other resources needed to make the evening event happen - grassroots organizing at it’s best. It was also clear that NBJWJ is having an impact. One example of this was the story of the successful campaign of the The Waste & Recycling Workers of Teamsters 665 against the Ratto corporation, which ultimately led significantly better working conditions for the teamsters, but also led to Sonoma County switching to Recology, an employee owned business with a mission that is centered around serving its employees and its community.
At the event, Omar Medina was introduced to the labor community as SRTA’s pro-labor candidate for school board. Also joining us was Ever Flores, President of Healdsburg Area Teachers Association, and a possible candidate for Santa Rosa City School Board in 2020 in Trustee Area 1 (current held by Jenni Klose).
The kenote speaker was Clive Jones, LGBTQ activist and Harvey Milk’s partner who, among other things, created the Aids Quilt project. His story of perseverance and the power of community organizing to make change was inspiring and heart touching.
I left the evening having met many interesting people, including plenty of candidates running in upcoming elections, having heard many inspirational stories of how people with a common vision can make profound change, and feeling proud of SRTA for joining North Bay Jobs with Justice. Our two groups have a lot in common and I look forward to working with them in the future.
Thank to all the SRTA members and friends who joined me at this inspirational event.
Building our power by teaming up with other labor unions and like minded groups.
We are inviting all SRTA members, SRCS parents, and community members to attend.
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