Friday, April 20, 2018

Puerto Rico Teachers in the Front Lines

Mercedes Martinez
Puerto Rico news from Mercedes Martinez teachers union leader. FFWP hopes the translation is accurate and apologizes for our linguistic limitations. We hope to keep folks up to date on these developments in Puerto Rico.

Siete verdugos, nombrados por el Congreso de EEUU para imponer medidas de austeridad severas sobre nuestra gente acaban de votar a favor del Plan Fiscal.
Siete miembros de una Junta que no fueron electos por nosotros. En cualquier país a eso le llaman dictadura, pero aquí no...aquí le llaman democracia.
Una junta que acaba de aprobar
Despidos de maestros, oficinistas, secretarias, conserjes, empleados de comedor en el DE, cierres de 307 escuelas, elementales con 330 estudiantes y secundarias con 700.
Eliminación de bono de Navidad para empleados públicos y privados, eliminación o reducción de la aportación patronal al plan médico a empleados públicos.
Eliminar el sistema de pensiones vitalicios y pasar a TODOS los maestros a un sistema de aportaciones definidas 401k, recortar las pensiones de 10 a 25% a nuestros jubilados.
La pregunta es: ¿nos vamos a quedar golpeados, o vamos a luchar?

Seven executioners, appointed by the U.S Congress to impose severe austerity measures on our people, have just voted in favour of the fiscal plan.

Seven members of a board who were not elected by us. In any country they call it dictatorship, but not here... here they call it democracy.

A board you just approved

Layoffs of teachers, clerks, secretaries, janitors, dining-room employees, 307 schools with 330 elementary students and 700 middle school students.

Elimination of Christmas bonus for public and private employees, disposal or reduction of employer contribution to the medical plan to public employees.

Remove the life pension system and move ALL teachers to a defined 401 k input system, cut pensions from 10 to 25 % to our retirees.

The question is: are we going to get beaten, or are we going to fight?

Tonight is a sad night in our island. The dictatorial Oversight Control Board approved its fiscal plan. A plan that creates draconian measures against the working class and retirees of our country:
$466.5 million dollar cut in the DOE's budget progressively from 2019-2023
$124.5 million dollar in savings, through lay offs of secretaries, janitors, cafeteria workers and other workers from the DOE.
$194.5 million dollar saving in teacher lay offs
$14 million dollar saving in 283 school closures
elimination of the Christmas bonus
elimination of the pension system and transfer all active public workers to a 401k system
cut from 10 to 25% of the current pensions of retirees
The government approved Law 85, which will allow charters and vouchers.
They want our people to pay a $72 billion odious debt, that was not created by us.
They want to use our kids for profit through the charter and voucher systems.
They approved the privatization of PREPA
They approved to reduce the minimum wage for youth workers of 25 years of age or less
This is what disaster capitalism in steroids looks like!
We have no way out
But fight fight fight!!!!


Sean said...

Solidarity with the sisters and brothers in Puerto Rico. This sounds a bit like what happened in Flint Michigan. Dictatorships moving in and wrecking peoples lives. If we could link up the struggle in Puerto Rico with the struggle in Flint this would be good. Sean O'Torain.

Sean said...

PS Sorry and of course link with the teachers and education workers in West Virginia and the other states where these workers are taking action. Sean O'Torain.