Detroit teachers union votes to authorize safety strike that could keep teachers from in-person classes

Posted at 9:17 PM, Aug 19, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-19 21:17:24-04

The Detroit Federation of Teachers hosted a safety strike vote Wednesday where they authorized a strike that could stop in-person learning for the upcoming school year.

Board officials said 91 percent of union members voted in favor to authorize the strike, which is in response to the Detroit Public Schools Community District reopening plans for students.

“Over the past few months our members have raised concerns regarding the District’s reopening plan,” said DFT President Terrence Martin. “Choice on whether to work remotely or in person is yet to be codified with signatures and guaranteed for all our members. It is imperative that the District puts protocols in place to protect both staff and students.”

Organizers said the vote was taken during the federation's monthly membership meeting.

DPSCD School Board and Superintendent Nikolai Vitti released the below joint statement in response to the safety strike vote:

While we acknowledge the action taken today by DFT, we are also confident the School Board and the District in discussion with DFT will result in a safe reopening of schools.

According to DFT, on behalf of its more than 4,000 members, the group has "continuously expressed concern with the District regarding its reopening plan."

"A few weeks ago we issued a list of demands in partnership with our sister unions. Our demands continue to go ignored and so it is now time for us to bring the question to our membership to make a difficult but necessary decision for what is in the best interest of our students and members," DFT wrote in a release.

View more information about the Detroit Federation of Teachers here.

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