I represent over 3,100 members of the Paterson Education Association (P.E.A.). The members of our Union are fed up with the abuse, neglect, and blatant lies from politicians on both sides of the isle. Frankly, blue collar citizens can no longer relate or trust our elected officials.
Educators have been railroaded by Union Scab Steve Sweeney with some of the highest employee contributions towards healthcare premiums in the entire country. While Governor Christie drove the conversation, do not forget Union Scab Steve Sweeney posted the bill. Our members are also fearful that their pensions will not be there when they eventually decide to retire. To add insult to injury, many retired public employees around the state are now struggling to make ends meet since Governor Christie eliminated the cost of living adjustment (COLA). These are the same employees who vividly recall Christie's open letter to all educators stating nothing regarding our pensions would change.
In my humble opinion, it is time for all declared candidates to take a stand. Will you repeal Chapter 78 employee health contributions? Will you fully fund our pensions? And will you fully fund our public schools in accordance with the law? Spare us the long drawn out politically correct answers to these questions. A simple yes or no is all that we seek.
Let me be crystal clear. The future of public education depends on the next gubernatorial election in New Jersey. All elections have consequences. This time, let's leave no rock unturned.
Very truly yours,
John McEntee, Jr., President
Paterson Education Association
445 Straight Street
Paterson, NJ, 07505