For CSA Members

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Chair's Page

Looking Back and Moving Forward

By Gayle Lockett

With the new court case Janus v. AFSCME, nearly identical to Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association, unions are again under threat.

If the case is upheld by the Supreme Court as it is expected to be, unions may lose their right to collect dues. If unions weaken, we retirees could one day see our benefits harmed as well.

We have a great union, one in which all of us have a voice. More than ever, we need our members to step up to make our voices heard outside of the union. One way to do that is by contributing to our political action committee.

This ensures that legislators understand the issues that are important to us. United we stand!

I want to thank all our retirees who represented us in Albany on May 22 and 23. We opposed a constitutional convention; requested an increase in the basic cost of living adjustment; and advocated for safe staffing levels in health care facilities. That's not an educational issue per se, but is one that affects all of us.

Everything considered, retirees had a great year. In January, we had an increase in Welfare Fund benefits, which added increased dental benefits and a new procedure, acupuncture. (Dr. Douglas Hathaway will send a letter explaining these benefits.)

I, and all the Retiree Chapter officers, Advisory Committee and Executive Board would like to acknowledge the immense work that our unit leaders and their executive boards are doing by providing representation and services on local and regional levels.

In addition, we thank all members of the Retiree Chapter (RC) Educational/Cultural, Unit, Legislative, Constitutional and By-Laws, Special Events, Supplemental Benefits, Outreach and Charity committees for their time and efforts in making our Retiree Chapter outstanding in meeting needs, being proactive and allowing members to be socially and politically engaged.

Thank you to all the units and individual donors who contributed to the CSA Scholarship Fund. CSA was able to increase the $1,500 check for five college bound students (one from each borough), who demonstrated leadership potential, to $2,500. It is rewarding to know that we can still have an effective influence on future leaders of America.

I want to wish everyone a joyous, healthy and superb summer. May you continue adding new chapters of wonder, excitement, adventure and knowledge in your life's journey!

Save the Dates
• Sat., Sept. 9: Labor Day Parade
• Sat., Nov. 4: CSA and RC General Conference meetings at
the NY Hilton honoring Dee Dee Goidel and Randi Herman
• Reregister for the permanent SDA and SAS by July 1. Check
out the new NYS Education requirements for recertification.

This column is reprinted from the June 2017 CSA News.

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