Chicago public school teachers and staff didn't get everything they wanted in their recent strike. But they managed to both win the battle and break new ground in the teachers' strike wave throughout the United States.
Alan Maass is the editor of Socialist Worker.
Chicago educators and school staff are about to enter a third week of striking. They’re showing how unions can use the power of picket lines and public pressure to fight for more than wage increases.
The Chicago Teachers Union is on strike this morning. In the face of incredibly restrictive, anti-worker labor law, they’re fighting to win written commitments on class size, staffing levels, privatization, and for the city’s entire working class.
Chicago teachers begin a three-day strike authorization vote today, the latest in their contract battle against Mayor Lori Lightfoot and education austerity. The strike, potentially joined this time by SEIU Local 73 school staff members, could be just as important as their 2012 victory against Rahm Emanuel.
In their 2012 strike, nearly 30,000 Chicago Teachers Union members planted a flag for labor militancy in public education. Today, they’re again on the verge of another strike — and they may be joined by 7,000 SEIU education workers.
Lori Lightfoot, Chicago's new mayor, ran as an anti-machine candidate that would shake things up in the deeply unequal city. But instead she's employing the same team as Rahm Emanuel — which could force the Chicago Teachers Union to call another strike.
The Chicago Teachers Union school representatives vote tomorrow on whether to suggest their membership approve their new contract or demand more.
The Verizon workers' campaign for union democracy set the stage for a successful strike.