Puerto Rico Teachers Defy Strike Ban

SAN JUAN, PUERTO RICO, January 29 — Over 500 teachers picketed the Caguas region of the Department of Education as more than 25,000 members of the Puerto Rican Federation of Teachers (FMPR) prepared to strike February 1 for higher wages, better working and school conditions and against the strike-breaking Law 45, which calls for firing of public workers who strike. The teachers are also fighting the bosses’ media and union hacks affiliated with the AFL-CIO who actually support Law 45 containing the strike-breaking clause. The government decertified the FMPR for violating this anti-strike law.
These militant teachers deserve the support of all teachers in the U.S. and internationally. It is a particularly important struggle for public workers in the U.S. who face the same kind of union-busting law.

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6 thoughts on “Puerto Rico Teachers Defy Strike Ban

  1. Hugo Delgado says:

    Im a teacher in Puerto Rico in one of the biggest schools in the island. I can assure you that this strike is not going to be an easy one. The goverment has been calling out for the breaking of the strike both by the police and retired teachers. We hope the blood doesnt reach the river as we like to say here in Puerto Rico. Thanks for the solidarity. a great majority of the teachers support the strike, our demmands and understand that privatization is not the way to go for public schools.

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  2. Another issue has arisen regarding thge relationship of the Progressive Labor Party and the Puerto Rican Socialist Party PSP and I had no place to put the issue forward to get a response:

    As best as I remember there was no official relationship of the PLP and the PSP can you please clarify the issue and email me as the question has arisen in what appears as a major historical proportion.

    Was the PSP listed in Challenge or related PLP publications listing the PSP in an comradely associative capacity?

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  3. PS this seriously relates to the serious problem that has existed in the government;s distortion of history in the United States and Puerto Rico that should be addressed!!

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  4. ***** ***** says:

    My mother has been a teacher in Puerto Rico for 30 years now. She will retire this summer, and even though she won’t benefit from the strike, she’s out there with her coworkers.

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  5. Meen says:

    The strike is now on. Tomorrow (Monday 25th of February) would be the third day. We need all the support we can get!!!!

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  6. Alfred H. Artze says:

    The STAR reported that Rossello stated that the strike was a “lose-lose” situation that could have been avoided under the government unionization law enacted during his years in La Fortaleza. Has Rossello ever considered the “loser-losers” who enacted this anti constitutional law? Employees have the Constitutional right to strike!
    According to Public Law #45, which gives the public sector workers the right to organize, strikes are prohibited. The law also makes the “promoting” of a strike illegal. 
How sweet this government is to give a right while taking a right away. Unions will not strike if the government would negotiate. Law #45 reflects the cowardice on the part of the government who are unable to solve problems fairly through negotiations.
    Let us exam carefully this situation, the union’s demands, includes: 


    • Class limit of 15 students so as to give individual attention. 


    • More teachers in fine arts, physical education, special needs education, health and other areas so as to enrich the academic offerings. 


    • More psychologists, social workers and other necessary staff. 


    • That every school has a well stocked and functioning
library. 


    • Mandatory health and safety measures be taken to guarantee conditions adequate for uninterrupted study. 


    • More substitute or itinerant teachers be hired. 


    • Institute democratic and participatory norms of school organization so that students can have the course offerings and learning conditions that they deserve. 


    • Enough materials and equipment so that each course can adequately serve the needs of the students. 


    • Guarantees against the privatization of schools so as to assure a free quality public school education.
    Sounds to me like the teachers know what they are talking about, lets listen to then, after all, the end result can only be a better school system. Who better than the teachers would know the true underlying problems? Governments like to spend money on school buildings and materials, contracts that the politicians can skim off, but the most important expense, salaries are kept low and the low salaries along with government incompetence and corruption is why our education system is in the poor shape that it is in.
    Alfred H. Artze
    San Juan

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