June 25, 2010
Statement by Randi Weingarten,
President, American Federation of Teachers,
On Jobs Bill To Avert State Budget Cuts and Layoffs
WASHINGTON—You have to hand it to the Republican minority in the Senate—they stay on message no matter how much harm they’re doing to their own constituents. In this case, the Republican minority once again is blocking critical aid to states that would help save the jobs of teachers, police and firefighters and would provide temporary assistance to help states meet their Medicaid obligations. This is the epitome of cutting off your nose to spite your face. Without an FMAP (Federal Medical Assistance Percentages) extension, states will be forced to make additional cuts in K-12 education programs and other vital public services to fill their budget gaps. This will have a devastating impact on a generation of children and compromise their access to a high-quality education.
The Republicans’ obstructionist politics is bad for their constituents and for the nation. The Senate needs to complete action on the aid package and support the temporary increase in FMAP as well as the extension of education jobs funding.
# # # #
The AFT represents more than 1.4 million pre-K through 12th-grade teachers; paraprofessionals and other school-related personnel; higher education faculty and professional staff; federal, state and local government employees; nurses and healthcare workers; and early childhood educators.