Health Los Angeles Safety Teachers Unions

UTLA Votes Overwhelmingly to Demand Safe Schools Before Returning to Work

Interesting essay samples and examples on: https://essays.io/dissertation-examples-samples/

For immediate release

March 5, 2021

Media contact:

Anna Bakalis / 213-305-9654

91% YES: UTLA members overwhelmingly unite behind a safe return

LOS ANGELES — UTLA members have voted overwhelmingly to resist a premature and unsafe physical return to school sites. Over five days of voting March 1 through 5 conducted by Integrity Voting Systems, 24,580 ballots were cast, with 91% Yes ballots (22,480) and 9% No (2,100). 

“This vote signals that in these most trying times, our members will not accept a rushed return that would endanger the safety of educators, students, and families,” UTLA President Cecily Myart-Cruz said.

The vote result means members remain committed to distance learning until the three safety criteria are met:

  • LA County is out of the purple tier
  • Staff are either fully vaccinated or provided access to full vaccination
  • Safety conditions are in place at our schools including PPE, physical distancing, improved ventilation, and daily cleaning

“Last March when educators first closed our classrooms and offices, we didn’t know that a year later we would still be physically separated from the students and communities we love,” Myart-Cruz said. “It has been a painful and difficult year for everyone. As much as educators long to be back to in-person instruction, it must be done safely for the sake of students, staff, and families. That has been our guiding principal from Day 1 of this pandemic.”

With COVID vaccines for school staff rolling out and infection rates decreasing, LA County is making progress toward the necessary conditions for a safe return, but we are not there yet. Some educators are having difficulty securing vaccination appointments, infection rates are still too high in many of the hard-hit communities we serve, and COVID variants could change the trajectory of the virus.

“With this vote, teachers are saying what I am hearing from parents in my community — it’s just not safe to physically return to schools yet,” said LAUSD parent and Reclaim Our Schools LA parent leader Alicia Baltazar. “I want to thank teachers for taking this stand and for all that you have been doing to educate my child during this pandemic.”

The overwhelming solidarity of the vote comes as legislators and Governor Newsom made last-minute changes to AB 86, the school reopening bill, redefining the COVID-19 tiers to try to push districts into returning to in-person instruction at levels that have been considered dangerous for close to a year.

LA continues to be the epicenter of the return-to-school debate, and the pressure on UTLA educators individually and collectively has been intense.

“Teaching in a pandemic is not easy. Standing up for students and our most marginalized communities is not easy. But our members continue to do both of these things, day in and day out because that’s our job,” Myart-Cruz said. 

###

Related posts

Tennessee: Governor Lee Listens to Dr. Birx, Ignores Her Warnings

V4tgDpeDBhQGUBa7

Economic Policy Institute: As Unions Decline, Income Inequality Grows

V4tgDpeDBhQGUBa7

Rhode Island: Teachers Demand End to State Takeover of Providence Schools

V4tgDpeDBhQGUBa7

Harley Litzelman: Cops Don’t Keep Kids Safe at School

V4tgDpeDBhQGUBa7

Growing Consensus that Young Children Can Safely Return to School

V4tgDpeDBhQGUBa7

UTLA: It Is Not Safe to Open Schools This Fall

V4tgDpeDBhQGUBa7

John Thompson: On the Front Lines in Oklahoma

V4tgDpeDBhQGUBa7

Virginia: Vote NO on Putting Anti-Union Statute in State Constitution

V4tgDpeDBhQGUBa7

Massachusetts: Commissioner Seeks Power to Remove Teachers Unilaterally

V4tgDpeDBhQGUBa7

Leave a Comment