PEF President Spence Speaks to members statewide
Story By DEBORAH A. MILES
On the days prior to the Labor Day weekend, PEF members in Binghamton and Malone received a visit from PEF President Wayne Spence, who informed them of the issues facing PEF and the labor movement.
Nearly 100 members who work at the state Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance located in the Glendale Technology Park Building learned about and discussed the ramifications if voters cast their ballots in favor of the state holding a constitutional convention.
PEF Region 5 Coordinator David Dobofsky said, “A huge portion of the meeting was about the constitutional convention. My members also received more insight about privatization and PEF’s campaign to protect state jobs. President Spence also touched upon the lease agreement for the Glendale Building which houses four state agencies and is up for renewal.
“We held a second meeting with 50 members who work at the state Department of Labor and State Insurance Fund. President Spence tailored his presentation to each group and it was a very positive meeting with interaction and a lot of questions and answers.”
Following Spence, PEF Region 8 Coordinator Michael Blue outlined the importance of member engagement to both groups. He highlighted the advantages of union membership such as pensions, health insurance and raises, and encouraged members to recommit to PEF and share the value of union membership to others.
On August 31, Spence addressed Region 7 members in Malone who work at the secure facilities operated by the state Office for People With Developmental Disabilities. The meeting included Assemblyman Billy Jones and representatives from other legislative offices. In addition to information on the constitutional convention, Spence heard member concerns about staffing levels and issues with the Justice Center for the Protection of People with Special Needs.
PEF Region 7 Coordinator Ed Snow said the meeting was informative and productive.
Spence plans to visit members in Regions 8, 9, 10, 11 and 12 before the PEF convention begins October 22.