A strong contract is only as good as its enforcement, and that process is what ensures our safety and security long after a strike.
Despite challenges around personal business days and the difficulty the Union has in combating CPS resistance to these cases, we continue to see arbitration victories for our members. Also, our new contract has yielded some significant improvements in certain aspects of our health insurance coverage.
CPS is illegally reneging on its deal. Our 11-day strike forced CPS to recognize the contributions of its veteran teachers, among other improvements. As soon as CTU members voted to ratify the agreement, however, the district broke our deal and demanded that most of the $25 million be paid in one-time lump sum bonuses rather than be added to veteran teachers’ base salaries, costing them thousands of dollars in salary increases over the course of their careers because their base salaries won’t increase. CPS didn’t want to pay its veteran teachers fairly, and now it’s retaliating against them for being among the longest-tenured and most dedicated workers in our schools.
In the wake of challenges around personal business (PB) days and our efforts in bargaining to consolidate and get Chicago Public Schools to stop fighting these cases, there have been several recent arbitration victories for Chicago Teachers Union members.
Please share your school’s employee handbook with your field rep and bring anything you have questions about to their attention.
The Union has recently won arbitration victories in five separate cases related to unsatisfactory REACH ratings, layoff rights, the timely filing of grievances and religious holidays. Arbitration cases are complex, time-consuming and costly to fight. CPS knows this, of course, and its tactic is often to force grievances into the lengthy arbitration process, which delays justice, depletes union resources and wears down opposition to its mistreatment of members.