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New Yorkers form 'MORE' in honor of CORE... '$665 was raised at the meeting for the CTU Solidarity Fund...' Support meeting for the CTU held in New York City

It was standing room only Thursday evening, August 23, 2012, as seventy five education and labor activists packed a room at the City University of New York’s Murphy Center for Labor Studies on 43rd Street to hear a report via skype from Kim Bowsky and Al Ramirez, Chicago Teacher Union (CTU) members of the Caucus of Rank and File Educators (CORE).

CORE's Kim Bowsky and Al Ramirez helped a standing room only crowd in New York City get an update on Chicago's struggles via Skype on August 23, 2012. Substance photo by Sean Ahern.The day before, with the parties still far from a settlement, the CTU House of Delegates authorized President Karen Lewis to deliver the 10 day notice of a strike as required under Illinois State law. The vote, on a motion by Al Ramirez, was adopted overwhelmingly by the roughly 700 members of the House present that afternoon.

Kim Bowsky, a CORE activist and Al Ramirez, a co-founder (and current co-chairman) of CORE reviewed the rank and file organizing over the past four years and the current state of contract negotiations. Both Bowsky and Ramirez are classroom teachers in Chicago.

The transformation of the CTU under the leadership of CORE has placed the Chicago schools conflict at the epicenter of resistance to the corporate takeover and destruction of public education and attack on unions nationwide. Support for the CTU is high in New York City on the agenda of NYC activists, and discussion focused on ways to reach out to the 200,000 plus members of the United Federation of Teachers in the coming weeks; $665 was raised at the meeting for the CTU Solidarity Fund.

Part of the audience at New York's City University for the forum on supporting the CTU. New Yorkers have formed "MORE" as a result of the Chicago example. Substance photo by Sean Ahern.Inspired by the success of CORE, a group of UFT members have formed the Movement of Rank and File Educators (MORE) and are considering a challenge to the current leadership of the UFT in 2013.

The meeting was endorsed by Movement of Rank and File Educators, Black New Yorkers for Educational Excellence, Coalition for Public Education, Grassroots Education Movement, Labor Notes, New York Collective of Radical Educators, New York City Labor Against the War, OWS Labor Outreach Committee, Independent Community of Educators, Teachers Unite.

For more information on NYC CTU support work contact: nycctusolidarity@gmail.com



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