- 7:00 p.m. TODAY, Wednesday, Oct. 23: Town Hall with CTU paraprofessionals and Local 73 workers who are paid poverty wages. St. Benedict African Catholic Church, 340 W 66th Street (doors open at 6:30 p.m.)
- 6:30 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 24: Picket lines go up at all 500+ schools, including Passages Charter strike picket line, 1643 W Bryn Mawr
- Late morning/early afternoon. Thursday, Oct. 24: Neighborhood canvasses, downtown actions, details TBA
- 3:00 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 24: Nonviolent civil disobedience training, CTU HQ, 1901 W. Carroll
- As tens of thousands of CTU educators, allies hit City Hall for mayor’s budget address, talks continue in bargaining and union schedules training in non-violent civil disobedience.
CHICAGO—Tens of thousands of striking teachers, school nurses, social workers, teaching assistants and other union school staff hit the streets this morning with allies to demand the equity and educational justice Mayor Lightfoot promised as a candidate. Instead, the mayor reiterated today in her budget address that she will break her campaign promises for this budget cycle—including her promise to put a nurse, a social worker and a librarian in every Chicago public school.
The CTU is shaping up plans for Thursday, which include picket lines at more than 500 schools starting at 6:30 a.m. Thursday, actions later that day in the neighborhoods, and a 3:00 p.m. training in nonviolent civil disobedience at CTU HQ.
CTU President Jesse Sharkey issued the following statement today in response to the mayor’s budget address:
“The Mayor said she would make hard choices—but where are they? She’s kicking revenue decisions to Springfield. She’s not asking the police to pay the cost of their own settlements. She’s not re-opening public mental health clinics, which would cost a fraction of one percent of her budget. Instead, she’s produced a menu of taxes that will hit poor and working people the hardest, from a restaurant tax to putting up new parking meters. Chicago’s not broke—it’s priorities are.”
“Candidate Lightfoot promised to make sure wealthy individuals and businesses pay their fair share—but she won’t reinstate the corporate head tax, won’t provide sufficient funds from her TIF surplus to support public needs, won’t create PILOTs—Payments In Lieu Of Taxes—for universities with multi-billion dollar endowments, won’t put a sales tax on luxury services. She says she’s an advocate of good government, but won’t sign off on an ordinance to take the TIF surplus return out of the realm of executive order and make it automatic on an annual basis.”
“Candidate Lightfoot promised to address the crisis in homelessness and affordable housing in this city. Instead, she’s putting a truly paltry $10 million towards youth homelessness and affordable housing, not even a drop in the bucket to address the crisis in our neighborhoods, some of which have lost over 10% of their affordable rental units over the last three years.”
“Incredibly, she won’t keep her promise to reverse some of her predecessor’s most harmful practices. Public health clinics provide free, walk-in, life-saving care—look no further than the tragic examples of Jeanette Hanson and Helen Morley, who died after losing care when Rahm Emanuel closed public mental health clinics. CPD’s budget will go up by $121 million and the public will continue to shoulder the debt burden for police abuse cases, while the Chicago Department of Public Health won’t receive funding for any new full time positions for mental health services. For someone who campaigned on both real equity and police reform, this is a broken promise to Chicagoans.”
“We were promised better. We were promised equity and justice—including educational justice for our students. This proposed budget does the opposite—and the mayor should expect robust opposition both from City Council members and ordinary Chicagoans, and a push to do what’s right instead of what’s convenient and profitable for the city’s elites.”