on a flyer that will be distributed on May 1 in teacher's mailboxes throughout the city touting the "accomplishments" of UFT El Presidente and Unity Politburo Chief Michael Mulgrew. Tonight, I shall relate a story of voting shenanigans that only Unity and The UFT could have pulled off.
Back in September of 2003 I had just arrived at PS 156 in The Bronx after working out of the District 7 office for 3 years. Sometime that fall we were having some type of SBO vote. I forgot what we were voting for, but I do recall that it was something that the principal at the time wanted, and since she wanted this and our chapter chair was in her pocket, it was to be.
The day of the vote I arrived at the school to notice an cardboard ballot box with a hole in it and a stack of ballots next to it. No big deal you say? Actually yes, it was a big deal. For this box and these ballots were on the counter in the office unattended there for the world not only to see, but for the world to vote in our private little election if it so desired.
I decided to monitor this election on my own. I came down during my prep and the box and the ballots were there, unattended still however the box was slowly being filled. I came down during my lunch and it was the same as it had been all day. Same at the end of the day. At no time throughout the day did anyone supervise the vote, nor was there anyone with a list of eligible voters.
Being that I had already seen how the clique was in true effect at PS 156 and not liking what I had seen I contacted the District 7 DL and informed her of this irregularity. I was asked if I am challenging the vote and when I answered in the affirmative was told to write a letter challenging the vote and why I was challenging it.
I did so promptly and was proud that I was taking a stand for what was right. It was not that I disputed what was voted on, but rather the way the vote was conducted. After all, we are professionals and as professionals we must set an example of honesty and transparency for our students and ourselves.
It was a couple of weeks or so before I heard back from The Bronx UFT. My petition to have the vote nullified and done again was denied. There was no finding of any irregularities and that the vote was conducted in an above board method.
I was incredulous. How can this be? Anyone, a parent, the UPS guy, the letter carrier, a cop, a student could have voted for the SBO and no one could have nor would have known. No one cared at The Bronx UFT and I should have know better. Even if no one voted that was not supposed to the perception was there that the vote was not done properly and therefore we should have voted again.
How can a union not look out for its members? How can a union when presented with such blatant disregard for a clean vote turn its back and look the other way as if nothing ever had happened?
The UFT likes to claim that it is a "union of professionals." Wrong. It is a "union for keeping those in power in power."