Tue, 31 Aug 1999
Dear Friends, The Detroit educator strike held firm today. Only 150
teachers, most of them new hires, crossed the picket lines, according
the administration's own reports. Bargaining ended tonight at 10 pm,
neither side reporting much progress. I interviewed one Takeover Board
member, and 4 members of a Takeover Board advisory group, this evening.
They made it clear that the union president, Elliot, is expected to
control over his membership, and get a contract passed before labor
Rank and file activist teachers in the Rouge Forum, and other groups
city, are organizing to deepen the power of the strike, to appeal to
districts for help, and to organize freedom schools. Community centers
the city remain open as the strike goes on. The mayor cut short his
vacation at Martha's Vineyard to return to give leadership to the
I have added material to the previous piece, and corrected some numerical
errors, and posted the analysis on my web page, click below.
Messages of solidarity to the teachers can be sent to the Rouge Forum
the site above. We will post those messages on a special page for the
You can communicate with newspapers in the city electronically. Both
newspapers, the Detroit News and the Free Press (sic) are scab papers
subjects of a boycott, but striking press workers have agreed that
papers can be read, for free, online. Note that all of the coverage
these papers is, at best, second hand. They cannot get reporters into
union meetings. Most strikers will not talk to them.
Both papers editorialized, in clear terms, against the strike today.
Freep told DFT boss Elliot to take charge of his members and get on
the business of school reform.
All the best, r
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