Over the summer, the state’s Spending Affordability Committee recommended a 1% raise for state employees, as well as a restoration of the annual step increases for those workers. The Governor’s announced budget ignores these recommendations, and gives state workers no raise and no step increase for the year.
With the state once again facing a structural deficit, the members of the AFT-Maryland feel in many ways the state is balancing the budget at our own expense. The result of stagnating wages—wages that do not even keep up with inflation—has essentially become a pay cut for those workers who perform the necessary work to provide the citizens of the state the services they deserve. Morale has plummeted, and the state has lost numerous highly experienced employees because the pay for the job is not enough to make ends meet. This attrition has resulted in and will continue to result in Marylanders not getting the high quality service citizens of the state deserve.
In addition, in 2016, extensive PIN eliminations exacerbated an already critical staffing crisis in state employment. In order to begin remedying it and serve the people of Maryland as best we can, the members of the AFT-Maryland need more staff, not less. The elimination of PINs is also a strain on the state’s budget. The work that highly-qualified and highly trained state employees could be doing will now be outsourced to private contractors at what the AFT-Maryland expects to be a greater cost to Maryland taxpayers.
AFT-Maryland calls on legislators to join us in this fight by opposing further PIN abolishment and work to reinstate into the budget the COLA raises and step increases for Maryland employees.
For more information, contact Todd Reynolds, Political Coordinator, AFT-Maryland, at firstname.lastname@example.org.