Published On: January 20, 2017

On December 23 the American Federation of Teachers released a report that brought official closure to the 173-member appeal of the BTU’s June election. The report ends a six-month investigative process on the conduct of the election. Here is an excerpt from the summary finding:

The purpose of the preliminary investigation was to ascertain whether the challenge raised material questions that would require referral to the AFT executive council and a hearing for resolution or whether the issues at hand could be resolved based on the complaint itself and the BTU’s response. Matthew Dwyer, counsel for BTU, conducted an investigation of the election based on the challenge and provided his findings to the AFT on behalf of BTU.

…After careful consideration of the evidence presented by the challengers, BTU’s response to the challenge and the union’s applicable governing documents, we conclude that the challengers’ allegations are not substantiated and therefore do not require a full investigation by the AFT executive council for resolution. The basis for our conclusion is set forth below.

While the outcome of the election investigation is clear, the difficulty of running an election as prescribed in our by-laws is also clear, and the election process cries out for certain changes.

The BTU president was charged in June with digging in deep into the election process and making recommendations. The report was delayed by membership vote in September, until after the AFT finished its investigation of the appeal. Read the president’s report here, along with all supporting documents.

This has been an arduous process for all, and this report is an attempt to look forward while learning from the past. Those who saw this process through from start to finish — the candidates, the election committee, and those who voted — all desire a strong union, a democratic union, and a transparent election process. I want to thank Patrick Connolly and Jessica Tang, whose contest drew most everyone’s attention and who each individually ran an above-board, hard-fought but above-the-fray campaign with great personal integrity. I also want to thank those who put in countless hours on the election committee, especially the co-chairs, Kristen Pinto and Anne Marie Adducci.

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SAVE THE DATE: On Wednesday, February 3, AFT’s General Counsel David Strom is giving a presentation on the Friedrichs case at our invitation, at the BTU. The Friedrichs case, heard last week at the Supreme Court, threatens collective bargaining rights throughout the country and has wide-ranging ramifications for our schools. Read a report from the Economic Policy Institute. Attorney Strom’s presentation will begin promptly at 4:30. All members are invited, and refreshments will be served. For those interested in the ramifications of this case, this is a must-attend event.

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A little bookkeeping: Last week some of our Gmail recipients did not receive their bulletins. If you were one of them and/or the problem continues, we’d like to hear from you. Just send us a quick email. Tha

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