PSEA president: Pa. House plans to consider bills that attack teachers, nurses, first responders

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PSEA president: Pa. House plans to consider bills that attack teachers, nurses, first responders

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David Broderic (717) 255-7169

Chris Lilienthal (717) 255-7134

HARRISBURG (June 7, 2022) – Rich Askey, president of the Pennsylvania State Education Association, commented today on bills the state House of Representatives plans to consider on Wednesday that are intended to silence the voices of teachers, nurses, and first responders by attacking the unions that represent them.

“These bills are all about making it harder for union members to get the rights and protections they deserve,” Askey said. “At a time when there are so many important problems Pennsylvanians want their lawmakers to solve, it is absolutely shocking that elected officials would waste time attacking people who make our state work, keep our streets safe, care for our sick, and educate our children.”

The bills before the House include:

  • HB 2042, which would require public employers to continually notify employees that they aren’t required to join a union, even though employees know that joining a union is completely voluntary.
  • HB 2048, which would make it illegal for union members to use payroll deduction to contribute to their own political action committees.
  • HB 844, which would needlessly impede unions from collecting members’ contact information.
  • HB 845, which requires public employers to post and provide public notice of a collective bargaining agreement before it is ratified by the union members who are covered by it.

“Legislators who think it is smart politics to attack unions don’t understand what they’re doing,” Askey said. “They’re attacking real people who do important jobs, serve their communities, keep us all safe, and educate our children. These are people who deserve our respect. And we’re going to fight off any attacks on them. Period.

“Legislators who support the thousands of teachers, nurses, and first responders in their districts and actually care about them will vote ‘no’ on these bills.”

An affiliate of the National Education Association, PSEA represents about 178,000 active and retired educators and school employees, student teachers, higher education staff, and health care workers in Pennsylvania.