“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.” - Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
We often invoke Dr. King to guide us through challenging times, and now his timeless words ring as true as much as they ever did.
On Friday, Jan. 20, 2017, Donald Trump was sworn in as the 45th President of the United States, signifying the start of an era that very well could be the most demanding and difficult time for organized labor and progressive ideals that this country has seen in generations. And we all know public sector workers like us here in the city of Los Angeles are the first to come under fire, along with our brothers and sisters in state, federal and other municipalities.
On Saturday, Jan. 21, 2017, millions of men, women and children took to the streets, INTERNATIONALLY to object to his views and policies that will affect women’s rights, LGBTQIA rights, the right to health care, safety and civil rights. These mass demonstrations show we are not going to sit by and wait to be insulted, demonized and threatened.
If you were ever looking for a time to take action, whether in the union or elsewhere, now is that time! President Trump’s cabinet appointments, including that of Labor Secretary, reflect a vision for America that marginalizes the middle class and all minorities. His Supreme Court appointments will surely lean conservative, resurrecting conflicts that we thought we were not going to have to face again, such as legal challenges to the widely-held tenet of agency fee payers and civil rights.
I ask that you stand with your union, and in your community, to show that you stand on the side of all working families in this time of challenge and controversy.
As for AFSCME 3090, our new executive board is eager to continue the fight! The board was sworn in at the last membership meeting, and a big “thank you” to all who voted. The new board members, including myself as your President, are as follows: Eva Espinoza, Vice President; Adriane Buchanan, Secretary; Alice Goff, Treasurer; and area coordinators Monica Delatorre (Central), Felix Rodriguez (Central), Tiffany Hall (Valley), Sherry Gardner (South) and Kathy Peters (West). Trustees are Diana Montana – 3-year term, Krishunda Stegner – 2-year term, and Lourdres Varas – 1-year term.
We are continuing to process the acting pay grievances. We have another day of mediation scheduled and hope to report a full outcome as soon as we receive the mediation report. It has been a productive process so far and we thank you for your patience in the matter.
With the soft launch of the negotiated Targeted Local Hire Program, the Mayor promised 5,000 new city jobs, and we have entered an era of growth in services that is long overdue for Angelenos. The Coalition of City Unions along with the City will announce a public launch of this program, this March.
Our next membership meeting is set for Wednesday, Feb. 1. @ 6:30 p.m. I challenge you and your coworkers to come with your questions and/or concerns and we will be happy to discuss everything with you!