UFT MEMBERS FOR PREMIUM-FREE QUALITY HEALTHCARE
We call for a membership-wide vote for any significant changes to active and/or retired members’ healthcare.These include any significant changes of our healthcare carriers,
limits to our choice of healthcare carriers, or institutions of or raises to premiums, deductibles or copayments, etc.UFT members must be provided full disclosure of the wording for such proposed changes, prior to the membership wide vote.JOIN USJoin the movement to demand a direct vote and say on our healthcare benefits. Sign the petition calling for a member-wide referendum.
** WAYS TO SIGN OUR PETITION**We want to ensure petition integrity and believe written signatures will be required by UFT leadership. Thus, we are not utilizing a digital online form for our petition gathering. Choose from the following options to sign the petition.
**OPTION 1: DOWNLOAD AND PRINT ** - You can complete and sign it, as a UFT member. Or, you can mobilize and share it with other UFT members, also. When you have completed it, send it to us via email or mail. Details to return the form are on the petition's first page.
OPTION 2: SIGN A DIGITAL PETITION - Click the button to complete our form to request a digital petition and you will be able to complete the petition digitally and/or via email. Active UFT member and UFT retirees, only, may sign.
OPTION 3: ATTEND A PETITION SIGNING EVENT (COMING SOON) - Join us at one of our petition signing events.
Receive updates on the petition campaign, healthcare and the contract.
Did you know?
Mulgrew voted in the Municipal Labor Committee (MLC) to force retired City workers off of traditional Medicare and onto an Aetna-managed Medicare Advantage Plan (MAP). Despite knowing full well that there was significant opposition, Mulgrew denied membership the right to vote directly.
Major changes to our healthcare were made as part of our citywide contracts in 2014, and again in 2018. Mulgrew was instrumental in negotiating both. In the last healthcare agreement, in 2018, he agreed to $600 million dollars in healthcare savings for the City for every year, in perpetuity. These changes and agreements were negotiated behind closed doors without member input. UFT chapter leaders and delegates were not given Appendix B to read beforehand which delineated the healthcare concessions when they voted in support of our 2018 contract.
UFT Leadership is currently working on a mysterious new health plan for in-service members that would replace GHI with something cheaper. As of now, membership will not have a say in this decision either, or given meaningful details about our potential options.
Even without switching us off of GHI, UFT leadership has greenlit various new, significant healthcare expenses for in-service members without a membership vote.For instance:* - ER visits now cost us triple digit copays, which are waived only if a patient is admitted, even if they are deemed to need emergency care.
- Copays for most urgent care centers (including CityMD) have also risen to triple digits, from $15 to $100, since 2016.
- Major providers, such as CityMD, Montefiore, and almost all radiology centers, are no longer ‘preferred,’ leading to higher copays.*
Despite many healthcare expenses more than doubling, UFT leadership has not fought for fair increases in pay. Because we did not even attempt to stop DC37 from accepting a sub-inflation wage increase, UFT members will not only be seeing higher health costs - they’ll be taking a pay cut.
Why do we need a petition to request a member-wide referendum to vote on healthcare changes?According to the UFT Constitution, members can demand a member-wide referendum vote on any issue other than a constitutional amendment or actions on the status of an individual member. First, ten percent of the membership must petition the UFT executive board for a referendum, and then the executive board must bring the matter to the entire body for a member-wide vote. Given the serious nature of the healthcare changes that have been made without member input or democratic decision-making, we must take this matter into our own hands.
**Does the UFT membership have the right to collectively decide on these healthcare matters?
Don’t we need to follow what the MLC negotiates and decides? **Although the UFT has chosen to allow the Municipal Labor Committee (MLC) to bargain over our healthcare, Section 12-307 of the Municipal Code and the Taylor Law require the employer to bargain in good faith over healthcare with each union, or certified employee organization.The MLC began to collectively negotiate for most of the city’s unions in 1967, and the UFT did not join the MLC until well over a decade later. We even have unique contractual provisions in our UFT teacher contract regarding healthcare that you won’t find in any other city union contracts. See 3G of our current contract. This shows we have the right to negotiate healthcare independently and have done so in the past.More importantly, we have an autonomous and sacred right to vote on important matters like healthcare as a union in order to tell leadership what we collectively want our officers to do on our behalf, within the MLC or independent of the MLC. They have a fiduciary responsibility to us, first. Moreover, we already decide on similar matters directly when we ratify our union contracts, or in our local chapters with a School-Based Option.
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