AFT - American Federation of Teachers

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AFT Resolutions

SPECIAL ORDER OF BUSINESS: TRIBUTE TO SANDRA FELDMAN

WHEREAS, as president of the AFT since 1997, Sandra Feldman has been a tireless advocate for children, public education and the labor movement and a strong voice for the 1.3 million educators, healthcare professionals, public employees and retirees represented by the union; and

WHEREAS, Sandra Feldman’s election as AFT president in 1997 followed a distinguished 30-year career with the United Federation of Teachers in New York City, including 11 years as UFT president, where she successfully allied her members’ needs with state lobbying priorities and served as a respected and effective force in the state and local AFL-CIO; and

WHEREAS, Sandra Feldman’s roots in a poor working-class neighborhood in Brooklyn, N.Y., shaped her lifelong commitment to expanding educational opportunity, serving the needs of disadvantaged youngsters and fighting for more resources in urban schools; and

WHEREAS, Sandra Feldman is nationally recognized as a champion of high academic standards, rigorous teacher training, universal preschool for young children and extended kindergarten for disadvantaged youngsters, redesigning schools for academic improvement and research-backed programs to raise student achievement; and

WHEREAS, Sandra Feldman has been an effective advocate for the rights and concerns of nurses and health professionals, working to bring public attention to the national nursing shortage, patient rights and adequate staffing levels in healthcare facilities; and

WHEREAS, Sandra Feldman has been in the forefront of efforts in Congress and in state legislatures to support pro-education, pro-worker measures, including adequate funding and resources for preK-12 and higher education and public services; and

WHEREAS, continuing her history of advocacy for civil rights and social justice that began in the 1960s as an activist in the Freedom Rides and the 1963 March on Washington for jobs and Freedom, Sandra Feldman has spoken out against all forms of discrimination; and

WHEREAS, Sandra Feldman has been a strong proponent of civic education and democracy in the international arena, condemning terrorism and repression of human and worker rights abroad, from China to Colombia, from the Soviet Union to Sudan; and

WHEREAS, Sandra Feldman is a leading voice in the national and international labor movement as a member of the AFL-CIO executive council and a vice president of Education International, highlighting the needs of working professionals as well as promoting universal education for all children throughout the world; and

WHEREAS, during Sandra Feldman’s tenure as president, the AFT grew by more than 365,000 new members, or 38.6 percent—the largest growth in a seven-year period in the union’s history—passing the 1 million mark in 1998 as the union adopted new initiatives to foster a "culture of organizing" within the AFT:

RESOLVED, that this convention honor the commitment and dedication of Sandra Feldman, AFT president from 1997-2004, and express its deep gratitude for her contributions to the union, to public education, to the labor movement and to the cause of freedom and democracy.


(2004)