This election, Chicago voters get to weigh in on how they think public school teachers should have their pensions funded. But critics of the referendum say it shouldn’t even be on the ballot. The non-binding referendum basically asks voters who should pay for Chicago teachers’ pensions: the city or the state? A popular talking point among Chicago aldermen is that city taxpayers get charged twice. Once for the city’s teachers’ pensions and once more for teachers’ pensions statewide.
A Chicago Teachers Union official Tuesday called for a “truce of peace’’ and denounced as “saber rattling” recent ads by what he called a “shoddy organization” that recently bankrolled a television commercial featuring Mayor Rahm Emanuel talking about the new CTU contract.
Aldermen almost unanimously fell in line behind the mayor, with Ald. “Proco” Joe Moreno (1st) saying the Chicago Teachers Union was “hell-bent on striking,” and Ald. Michele Smith (43rd) warning a protracted strike could send middle-class families fleeing to the suburbs. But as the strike began, the majority of parents and students at school gates across the city seemed to be taking the teachers’ side.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel tried to go about his Sunday like any other — a parade, a street fair and then returning home to his kids. But with a Chicago Teachers Union strike looming, it was a Sunday unlike any other, and Emanuel stayed in contact with his handpicked people inside the contract negotiations.
Chicago Teachers Union members will go on strike Monday morning after talks failed to yield a new contract, the head of the union announced late Sunday. “In the morning, no CTU member will be inside our schools,” Karen Lewis said at 10 p.m. “Please seek alternative care for your children.”
- CPS, teachers fail to prevent strike in morning [Chicago Tribune]
- Union: No Deal To Avoid Strike, Teachers Will Hit Picket Lines [CBS Chicago]