This year I’m personally thankful for the work we did to support candidates who support public employees. From the Governor’s mansion to the state house, our work during the electoral season will have a direct benefit on public employees. We helped elect candidates across Maryland who have committed to fully funding and implementing the Blueprint for Maryland’s future, investing in public health facilities, staffing and funding agencies at the levels needed to best serve Marylanders, and creating safe and healthy worksites.
I’m thankful that members cared so much about democracy in the workplace and democracy in our state, that they gave their Saturday mornings to engage in member-to-member outreach to other union households to get out the vote for labor endorsed candidates. Our work in Maryland politics does not stop with elections. Members make up and contribute to the Committee on Political Education (COPE) and the funds raised from that committee allow AFT-Maryland to have a meaningful voice in the halls of power. Members need to know that the COPE fund ensures when decisions are made, public employees will have their say.
Hard work deserves rest and educators and public employees have been among the hardest workers in the state of Maryland. We will continue to fight for democracy in our communities and on the job, but now we pause for a moment thinking about all that we have won and are grateful for. It is important that we don’t ever get so consumed with the fight for more, that we forget to cherish that which we have.
Hopefully this Thanksgiving holiday, you too can reflect on all that you are thankful for. During that reflection, remember your state federation is thankful for you.