In week two of the Chicago teachers strike, Mayor Rahm Emanuel has decided to take legal action. As promised, Emanuel filed an injunction at the Richard J. Daley Center, Monday (Sept. 17) to have a judge step in to end the city’s first strike of teachers in 25 years.
“I will not stand by while the children of Chicago are played as pawns in an international dispute within a union,” the mayor said in a statement. “This was a strike of choice and now a delay of choice that is wrong for our children.”
Roughly 400,000 students are out of the classroom since the start of the strike, leaving parents scrambling to find alternatives.
“This continued action by union leadership is illegal on two grounds. It is over issues that are deemed by state law to be non-strikable, and it endangers the health and safety of our children.”
Delegates from the Chicago Teachers Union delayed a vote to end the strike Sunday (Sept. 16), citing that they needed more time. Given the Jewish holiday Rosh Hashanah which began at sundown Sunday, a new meeting has been scheduled for Tuesday (Sept. 18). Unhappy with current negotiations, Union leaders want to meet with the schools that they represent before making a final decision. “This union has proven the Chicago labor movement is neither dormant nor dead,” said Union President Karen Lewis. “We have solidified our political power and captured the imagination of a nation. No one will ever look upon a teacher and think of him of her as a passive, person to be bullied and walked on ever again.”
Teachers chose to go on strike due to discrepancies over salary, benefits, and job security.
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