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Thank You Jeff Whittle

Congratulations to Jeff Whittle, Macomb ISD Fed of Paraprofessionals, on being a recipient of 2022 AFT Paraprofessionals and School Related Personnel (PSRP) Advocacy Award presented at the AFT PSRP Conference last week.

Jeff has been a paraprofessional for 30+ years and recently ended his 9th year as the president of the Macomb ISD Paraprofessionals. His advocacy for support staff has been long and extensive, from raising the visibility and importance of PSRP work to more recently advocating for legislation on the PSRP-to-teacher pipeline. His advocacy crosses all levels on state and national platforms.

Colleague and AAFMCC local President Jodi Monday, nominated Jeff for our member spotlight, echoing his commitment to advocating for support staff:

“Jeff is an extraordinary human who has devoted his life to working with mentally, emotionally and physically disabled children and families. He works tirelessly with local legislators and community groups to improve the lives of paraprofessional workers across Michigan and the US. One (of many) example(s) of this is working directly with Representative Hertel to address the teacher shortage crisis by creating legislation that would form a pipeline for paraprofessionals to become teachers.”

EMUFT Respect Rally a Big Success!

EMUFT’s Respect Rally this past Thursday was a big success.  EMUFT vice president Anke Wolbert spoke to the EMU Board of Regents about the lack of a path to full time employment for part time lecturers, high teaching loads for full time lecturers, low pay for all lecturers, and the lack of a voice in important campus decisions.  She also delivered close to 200 signatures on the Respect petition.  EMUFT President Daric Thorne led members and community allies in an enthusiastic march around Welch Hall while the petition was being delivered. EMU – AAUP President Mohamed El-Sayed announced to the rally that the tenure faculty union fully supports EMUFT and will join in the fight for respect for all lecturers.

FNTFO Celebrates 10th Anniversary of Signing of First Contract

Last Friday, members of the Ferris Non-Tenure Track Faculty Organization held a 10th anniversary party celebrating the signing of their first contract with Ferris. The union set up a tent on the quad of the Ferris campus where members of the original organizing committee shared stories with new members about the birth of their union and pointed to the many gains the local had made over the past 10 years.  The union called for anyone with materials from their original campaign to bring them to the celebration to share with everyone and donate to a collection of artifacts the local will be donating to the AFT Michigan archives at the Walter Reuther Library. A wonderful collection of memorabilia was gathered. The union will send everything to the Reuther after hosting a digital conversation party to create a virtual archive to stay with them at the campus.  Congratulations FNTFO on this milestone event.   

Contribute to the AFT Michigan PAC Today

AFT Michigan fights for our members, students and communities all year round and we need your help. Can you donate $1 a week to aid us in this fight? Please visit the AFT Michigan website to contribute and make a big difference in protecting public education and building a better Michigan future! 

Support Detroit Newspaper Workers

The Newspaper Guild of Detroit members at the Detroit News, Free Press and Observer & Eccentric/Hometown Life are fighting for a fair contract. Gannett refuses to invest in its employees. They have denied even very reasonable wage proposals and have added critical issues including healthcare and pension benefits. They are not only fighting for their members but for quality journalism in our communities. Democracy depends on journalism. Journalists hold the powerful accountable and shine the light on critical issues in our communities. They need Gannett to invest in quality, local quality journalism across Metro Detroit.

Please take a moment to sign their petition and forward it to your family and friends.

Professional Development

AFT Michigan 

Supporting Learners to Cope After a Traumatic Event(s)

Saturday, May 7, 2022

8:30 am – 4:30 pm

In the wake of several traumatic events such as the ongoing COVID 19 Pandemic and the Ukraine War, students may experience fear, worry, and sadness. This workshop will provide strategies for educators to help learners through their fears and grief, and prevent long term negative effects academically and emotionally.

Click here to register:

In solidarity, 

David Hecker


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