This is my seventh Educator Day on the Hill (EDOH) and my first as a Policy Ambassador. Many first-time attendees seem nervous about attending EDOH, learning about the bills on the Hill, meeting their representatives, and learning how to build relationships with said representatives. I was worried myself, especially the first time.
However, since that first EDOH, I have built relationships with my representatives and worked on their campaigns over the years. It’s safe to say that I am no longer nervous about it. Getting over that first time can help bring education forward. We are all voices for education, and we must regularly work with our legislators as they typically are not educators, nor do they know how our day-to-day works unless we share our stories with them. If you have been on the fence about getting involved, now is the time to say yes to participating. UEA’s legislative team works very hard on our behalf, but our collective voice can be much louder together.
In this message, I want to focus on our Political Action Committee, the UEA PAC. The “war chest” for UEA was effectively dismantled by a bill passed in 2008. This bill made it illegal for UEA to collect PAC contributions in the manner that had continuously funded it quite nicely. Our legislators were beholden to our funds, and since this bill, our funds have steadily decreased. We can no longer afford to allow this to be the case. We have to rebuild our PAC and rebuild it in a way that brings that clout we once had into the forefront and then some.
Many of us are mourning the passing of HB215, the voucher bill with the bribe of a much-deserved raise for educators. If you’re one of these educators, please consider taking a tiny percent of that bribe money, just 6%, which is $25.00 a month, and become a Capital Club Gold contributor. UEA is making this more accessible than ever by signing up for E-Z Pay PAC, an Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) that will help us build our PAC and become the force we all know we can be. There are so many levels that you can sign up for. If $25.00 a month is more than your family can part with, then at least consider $5.00 a month at the Activist level. Regardless of what you decide you can afford, we cannot afford to lose our power because of all the dark money we are up against. In the words of Labor Activist Joe Hill, “Don’t waste any time in mourning. Organize [and regularly contribute to PAC].” Contribute to PAC here, https://myuea.org/issues-and-action/uea-pac/.
Canyons Education Association