Home Minnesota Educator Delegates chart course for union work at 2024 Representative Convention

Delegates chart course for union work at 2024 Representative Convention

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Education Minnesota hosted its annual Representative Convention on April 19 and 20 in Bloomington. Delegates from locals across the state met to discuss agenda items that will guide the union’s work for the upcoming year.

The 500 delegates convened and passed action items, had robust debate, heard from state and national speakers and honored Education Minnesota award recipients.

After a full day of discussion and debate, delegates approved action items to have Education Minnesota:

  • Work through the Pension Advocacy Group, or PAG, to encourage members’ participation in the pension movement by identifying and training members as Pension Advocacy Leaders, or PALs, to organize locals across the state to advocate for improved pensions during the 2024 election cycle and the 2025 budget discussion.
  • Promote and support locals to designate a member who will lead and coordinate pension reform actions for their local during the school year as a “Pension Reform Specialist.”
  • Focus on the educator health care crisis by organizing and advocating for a statewide mandatory educator health insurance pool in the 2025 legislative session.
  • Affirm and support resolutions made by the national AFL-CIO, NEA, and AFT calling for a ceasefire in Gaza.
  • Put work and funding into the member-led Political Action Committee 2024 to organize members at work to vote for pro-education legislative candidates, as well as encouraging locals to build power through school board elections and endorsements.
  • Form an ad hoc committee to evaluate the option for sliding scale membership dues for educators within their first five years of teaching who would like to join Education Minnesota but are experiencing financial hardship.

Action items are specific directives to Education Minnesota that require a specific action. They generally expire at the next Representative Convention.

There were no board positions up for election this year, but Education Minnesota did honor several awardees, including ESP of the Year Darci Brown, Human Rights Award winner Zak Amin, Peterson-Schaubach Leadership Award winner Tracy Detloff, and We Are One Award winner Hermantown Local 1096.

The Peterson-Schaubach Leadership Award honors a leader who has made outstanding contributions to Education Minnesota or its locals. This year’s recipient helped create Education Minnesota’s Degrees, Not Debt program to educate members on navigating student loan forgiveness.

The Human Rights Award honors a member who uses their advocacy to advance human and civil rights. This year’s winner established a Kurdish heritage class to teach Kurdish-American students about Kurdish language and culture.

The We Are One Solidarity Award is given annually to an Education Minnesota local union or group of active members demonstrating outstanding or significant union leadership. This year’s recipient was Education Minnesota, Hermantown Local 1096 for exceptional advocacy and engagement around bargaining to negotiate a strong contract for their members.

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