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UFT Exec Board Member's Open Letter to UFT Leadership Regarding Amy Arundell
Mike Schirtzer, at-large UFT executive board member, issues an open letter to UFT leadership regarding the recent decision to re-assign Queens borough rep, Amy Arundell
Dear UFT Leadership,
This move to reassign Amy Arundell has already caused our membership to lose faith in its union. Amy is “the UFT” to many online, she answers questions, responds privately, but is the public face of a union that is responsive, engaged and involved with it members. UFT is at a crossroads. There are forces that are well funded that seek to destroy us. We need a rank and file that trust and believe in our union leadership. We need a union staff that is ready to do what’s best for our membership.
Amy is one of the best union leaders I know. She is an asset for all of our members and their families, although we may have different views both on union and political matters , there is no person who serves this UFT with as much passion and dignity as does she.
I don’t know what may have caused Amy to be removed from her position. Some members have suggested it’s our differences on the middle east. But I wanted you to know that her service to our union and to the teachers of New York is second to none.
I am a pro-Israel Zionist. I have been horrified at what Hammas did this past week, as has Amy, who has expressed the same in our private conversations. Her views on the government of Israel are totally in line with many of my Jewish friends and family. I think we ought not to shut down opposing thoughts on the current crisis at this moment. In fact, this type of debate is what our democracy demands of us.
We have had our differences in how the UFT ought to organize and politically we are sometimes on different ends of the same side. Our disagreements are always respectful, polite and end up in a good laugh or two as it should between union brothers and sisters.
Lastly, I would like to thank you all and Amy for the contract action campaign that we organized during the spring. It was an amazing moment for our union as we engaged members that had never done so before in teach-ins and borough wide protest winning support from the public. I hope our union leadership continues down this road and we work together to champion the cause of our members and the students we serve.
UFT Executive Board
Note from Michael Schirtzer: I am asking UFT members to sign this petition.
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