Home » May 2017 – President’s Message


Wayne-Spence PEF PresidentVision, mission goals keep PEF on course


A  little over a year ago, I shared with you our Vision and Mission Statements to help clarify and communicate our purpose, and ensure we not lose the momentum and focus we’ve been building together:

PEF Vision Statement

Our vision is of a strong and effective union representing and advancing the rights, interests and benefits of

our members. We have an engaged membership and well trained local leaders who will be active politically and legislatively to advance union goals. Our vision is that PEF is respected by the communities in which we work and live for the quality services PEF members provide and for the contributions PEF members make both on and off the job. Our vision is that membership in PEF improves the quality and well-being of our members’ lives in an atmosphere of democracy and solidarity.

PEF Mission Statement

PEF exists to promote the welfare of its members with respect to all terms and conditions of employment, and it will achieve this through:

• Negotiating a good contract that reflects the higher wages, better working conditions and improved retirement benefits our members deserve;

• A Go Public Campaign to draw attention to the quality services PEF members provide to the citizens of New York state and to counter costly privatization that often results in diminished and inferior services; and

• A Member Engagement Campaign that will reinvigorate the membership in the face of outside threats such as Friedrichs v. CTA and will be a call to action to address issues such as privatization, civil service abuse, staff shortages and hostile work environments through legislative lobbying.

I hope you will be heartened, as I was, that our vision has held true and that we have made exceptional progress together in achieving the goals of our mission.

We successfully negotiated and ratified two contracts in the last year. Your outstanding participation in the vote on the one-year-retro contract was key in giving added strength to the PEF contract team while it was negotiating the three-year contract, which you also voted overwhelmingly to ratify

We’ve launched a Go Public campaign with billboards around the state, showcasing PEF members and the value your work brings to the residents of

New York state. Perhaps you have seen one of your union brothers or sisters on the billboards. At the same time, we are working hard to get Cost Benefit Analysis legislation passed and signed into law. We know we can count on you to help

us advocate and lobby for this important legislation.

In mid-March, PEF had a first-ever membership engagement blitz in Region 8. One-on-one conversations were had with thousands of members both at their worksites and during home visits. What came to be known as the “Blizzard Blitz” was an enlightening and inspirational week for everyone involved. Our membership engagement effort does not stop with one successful week. Membership engagement is ongoing and is the umbrella under which all of our activities fall.

For the next six months, there’s one other initiative we should consider part of our mission. And that is defeating the referendum on the November 2017 ballot for a state Constitutional Convention. We recently put together a VOTE NO Toolkit for the PEF website with information and material to help you understand why a Constitutional Convention would spell disaster for unions. (See related story on page 6.)

It takes courage to create a vision and even more courage to act on it. I want to thank you all for your commitment to PEF and our vision, even when unforeseen events occur. We are a team, and you each play a role in our successes.


Table of Contents – May 2017