September 4, 2018

 

Woonsocket Teachers and Para’s Start Work to Rule

 

Woonsocket, RI - Today the Teachers and Paraprofessionals at the Woonsocket Education Department began a “Work to Rule” job action because of an impasse in their contract negotiations. “For the first time in over 30 years we do not have a contract at the beginning of a school year,” stated Jeffrey Partington, President of the Woonsocket Teachers’ Guild. “The hard-working Teachers and Paraprofessionals of this city deserve a fair and equitable contract.  It is clear that the Mayor, in an election year, is holding the purse strings, and has no desire to move the city forward by investing appropriate funds in public education.”

On August 29, 2018, a letter requesting mediation in the dispute was sent to the Department of Labor from the Woonsocket School Committee.  The letter was signed by the chair of the committee, Soren Seale. “We welcome the School Committee’s request for mediation,” Mr. Partington said. “This is the logical next step in this process, and we are confident that we can come to an expedient equitable solution.”  

When asked about the logistics of the “Work to Rule” job action, Mr. Partington revealed that, “The WTG and the Woonsocket Education Department have worked closely together to ensure that during this dark time in labor relations that no child’s safety is impacted. We have not lost sight of the most important thing we do, serve the students of Woonsocket.”

Mr. Partington went on to say, “We call upon the School Committee to request adequate funding from the City in future years to settle the current impasse created by the Mayor’s negotiating team. Once funding is in place, we can all get back to business as usual.”

                    

The Special Counsel is submitting his final report of Russia interference in the 2016 election. Attorney General Bill Barr notified Congress that Robert Mueller [[ MULL-er ]] has finished his work and submitted the final report. No details have been released. Barr wrote in a letter to Congressional leaders that he might be able to brief them on the contents of the report as early as this weekend.        The White House is claiming it has not seen the Special Counsel's final report. Press Secretary Sarah Sanders says they have not seen the report and were not briefed on its contents. Mueller submitted a confidential report to Attorney General Bill Barr today. Sanders said the next steps are up to Barr. President Trump's lawyers said they're pleased Mueller's office has delivered its report. They added that Barr determines the "appropriate next steps."        Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer is one of many Democrats calling for the Special Counsel report to be made public. Schumer remarked that the American people have a right to the truth. He added that Barr should make Mueller's report public without giving the White House a say in what's released.        Texas is suing over this week's massive fire in Deer Park. Attorney General Ken Paxton says Intercontinental Terminals Company violated the Texas Clear Air Act when flames broke out last Sunday at its Deer Park facility. Flames briefly rekindled today but have now been put out.        The Governor of Iowa is asking President Trump to declare flooding in that state a disaster and to set aside one-point-six billion dollars. Almost 60 counties in the state could request funds because of the flooding that heavily damaged agricultural areas.        Saturday's Powerball jackpot should be the fourth largest in the drawing's history. It is expected to reach 625 million dollars after no one won on Wednesday. There hasn't been a Powerball winner since January.