Apply now for the Prize for Solution-Driven Unionism

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The AFT, in partnership with the Albert Shanker Institute and the AFT Innovation Fund, is accepting applications for the second annual $25,000 Prize for Solution-Driven Unionism.

When we have tough problems to solve, AFT members think outside the box. The Prize for Solution-Driven Unionism honors the most innovative, inspiring examples of collaborative work by our state and local affiliates and to encourage more of this cutting-edge thinking.

Solution-driven unionism is grounded in solving problems, not just winning arguments. It's about fighting for something that will help our members and the people we serve, not just about fighting against something. This is who we are—and we want to honor the best solution-driven ideas.

Application information is available online. Applications will be accepted until Aug. 15. The winner will be announced in Washington, D.C., in October.

Every AFT constituency is eligible and encouraged to apply.

Last year's awardees:

  • The New York Performance Standards Consortium. Thirty-seven diverse New York City public high schools, plus one in Ithaca and one in Rochester, received waivers from four of the state's five standardized exams to emphasize instruction focused on problem solving, critical thinking, writing and discussion, rather than preparing for and taking state tests.
  • AFT Connecticut. With growing state budget deficits, state workers faced massive layoffs unless they could come up with $2 billion in savings. AFT Connecticut worked closely with the State Employee Bargaining Agent Coalition to develop a Health Enhancement Program that saved jobs, benefits and about $1.6 billion. The program focuses on preventative care and chronic disease management, and includes incentives for enrollment and compliance, as well as a $100 additional monthly premium for not enrolling.

April 22, 2014