AFT President Weingarten and AFT New Mexico President Ly React to Final Passage of House Bill 364
Sarah Hager Mosby
SANTA FE, N.M.—American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten and AFT New Mexico President Stephanie Ly released the following statements upon passage of House Bill 364, which strengthens workers’ voices and modernizes and improves the state’s Public Employee Bargaining Act, protecting the right to talk about unions and union issues at the workplace and prohibiting state tax dollars from being used to fight unionization efforts:
“Public employees in New Mexico want what every American worker wants—a way to ensure they have a voice and role in the decisions that affect their day-to-day lives and the day-to-day lives of the communities we serve. Today, they won a big step in that righteous fight.
“Collective bargaining is about much more than just joining a union; it helps workers get a fair shot at the resources they need to do their jobs. For public employees, it makes them safer, creates a path for family-sustaining compensation, and allows for innovations for the common good. When the people who are closest to delivering services to the public have a seat at the bargaining table, the entire community benefits.
“As the Trump administration does everything in its power to pull the rug out from workers, it has increasingly become each state’s responsibility to protect its workers. New Mexico is proof that elections matter, and when we elect lawmakers who share our values, we get policy that actually makes a difference in people’s lives.”
“Public employees are the backbone of this state—we are educators, state workers, police officers, nurses, firefighters and thousands of other dedicated public servants. Who knows better what New Mexico needs than the people on the frontlines doing the work? These workers stand for us every day, and we stand with them in the fight to re-establish dignity and fairness in our places of work.
“Every person in New Mexico deserves the right to come together and stand up for their safety and economic well-being, and HB 364 strengthens this right for New Mexicans. With this bill, championed by Sens. Mimi Stewart and Daniel Ivey-Soto, and Reps. Christine Trujillo, Sheryl Williams Stapleton and Daymon Ely, we are on the right track to ensuring our public employees have their voices heard.
“We want to offer sincere thanks to every member of the N.M. House of Representatives and N.M. Senate who stood in solidarity with working New Mexicans. We appreciate your courage to do the right thing and respect and empower the working women and men of our state.”
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The AFT represents 1.7 million pre-K through 12th-grade teachers; paraprofessionals and other school-related personnel; higher education faculty and professional staff; federal, state and local government employees; nurses and healthcare workers; and early childhood educators.