Sept. 14, 2016

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Negotiations update served up at chapter picnic

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More than 400 UAlbany bargaining unit members were served an update on contract talks along with lunch Sept. 13 at the chapter’s annual welcome-back picnic.

“Things are moving and we’re working as hard as we can,” said Chief Negotiator and statewide VP for Professionals Philippe Abraham. “Our goal is to get a good—not a fast—contract. It will take as long as it takes.”

Negotiations with the state began July 15 with the exchange of proposals. UUP and the state are bargaining for a successor agreement to the five-year contract that expired July 1. Abraham reminded members that the detailed proposals submitted by UUP and the state can be viewed through a members-only portal on UUP’s website.

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Albany Chapter President Bret Benjamin thanked picnickers for turning out.

“The more folks come out, the stronger we are as a chapter,” he said.

Benjamin urged members to turn that strength into action by working to elect NYSUT-endorsed candidates.

“Could you help us just one time?” he asked. “We need to support the NYSUT-endorsed candidates that support our issues.”

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Statewide Secretary Eileen Landy joined Abraham in serving up meals to the record crowd. Statewide Membership Development Officer Tom Hoey was also there, urging more members to become active. Hoey said 10 bargaining unit members signed union cards at the picnic.

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