You are undoubtedly aware that the Portland Association of Teachers (PAT) voted on Feb. 5 to authorize a strike. We know many of you work in and with Portland Public Schools (PPS) and have questions about accessing your work site while the strike is active.
DO YOU HAVE TO CROSS THE PICKET LINE? It is important for you to know that not only our contract but Oregon labor law requires public employees who are not members of the union (bargaining unit) on strike to continue to work, even if they must cross a picket line to do so. While this can be an uncomfortable prospect it is the law and our contractual agreement with the County.
At this point we do not know exactly which programs and classes PPS will continue during the strike and the County will probably not know until mid week. An employer’s plans for operations during a strike are often not in place until very close to the strike date.
PAT has identified February 20 as the first day of the strike. At this point PPS is saying all schools will be closed the first 3 days of the strike. Elementary and middle schools will open after that. High school closures are uncertain.
PAT will provide picket passes for our members who must cross the picket line in the course of their jobs. These passes will change every 3 days if/as the strike continues. Your AFSCME representatives will coordinate distribution of the picket passes.
For the time being the plan is as follows:
HEALTH DEPARTMENT: Passes will be available from Union Staff Rep JaNell Earley at the AFSCME Office, 6025 E Burnside, Portland, Or after 3:00 on February 18th Contact JaNell at email@example.com.
FACILITY & PROPERTY MANAGEMENT: Passes will be available from Union President Deirdre Mahoney-Clark in Dispatch at the Blanchard Building on February 19 after 1:00 pm for use beginning February 20. Contact Deirdre at firstname.lastname@example.org
LIBRARY passes will be available from Nicole Newsom in the Library Admin Builiding beginning February 18th at 2:00 pm.
IT Passes will be available from Union Staff Rep Issa Simpson at the AFSCME Office 6025 E Burnside, Portland Or after noon on February 19. Contact Issa at email@example.com. (WE may be able to deliver some of the passes so watch for updates. )
DCJ Passes -Issa Simpson will contact you to ensure you have your pass. If you have not heard from Issa by February 18th and you believe you will need to visit a PPS site, please contact Issa at the e-mail above.
We will continue to update you as we receive more information and the links below also contain more information that may be helpful.
PAT website http://www.pdx.teachers.org/
PPS FAQ sheet as of 2/13 http://www.pps.k12.or.us/files/laborrelations/PPS-School-Information.pdf
Parent Teacher Solidarity Campaign website http://www.teachersandparentstogether.com/what-parents-should-know-about-a-teacher-strike
Jobs With Justice-some great information on actions here http://www.jwjpdx.org/
Parent’s in need of child care may find this helpful-AFSCME Child care list http://www.oregonccpt.com/?zone=/unionactive/view_page.cfm&page=Find20Union20Child20Care