Resolution on Agreement Securing Pension Benefits and Ending Two Work Days Before Labor Day

On Monday, June 22, 2009 the UFT’s Executive Board overwhelmingly approved a resolution that created a new pension tier (of poorer quality) for future UFT hirees. It also, effective immediately, ended the requirement to report to work on the two days before Labor Day.

New Action/UFT enthusiastically and unanimously supports the return of the first day of work to the day after Labor Day.

In return for this change, the UFT agreed to modifications to the pension plan of future UFT members. New Action has always opposed the creation of any pension tier that was in any way inferior to what already existed.

This new pension tier for future UFT members is inferior. It stipulates eligibility at age of 55 with 27 years of service. In addition there is a member contribution of 4.85 % for 27 years (reduced to 1.85% after 27 years).

New Action opposition was not unanimous. The reality of the present economic crisis threatened to put future UFT members into an even more inferior tier- Tier III, which requires an age of 62 years and reduces your pension by your Social Security benefit (probably $1500-$2000/month). Governor Patterson has already put this modification in place for two unions. Two other unions agreed to modifications that were not as severe as Tier III. So did the UFT. The present chaos in Albany also has the potential to create even more mayhem. So for some New Action Executive Board members, the agreement was the lesser of two evils.

For New Action the main issue in this agreement is the pension deterioration for new UFT members. We are unanimous in making a commitment to eliminate this tier and return all members to the present pension plan.

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