KOSE April Newsletter

On March 8th dozens of members of the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) from around the country arrived in Wichita.  Attendees from as far away as Alaska and Connecticut came to help strengthen and energize KOSE and its members through a training and mobilization program AFT conducts annually.
 
During the week long program participants received morning training sessions on how to engage, organize, and activate workers.  Then, in the afternoons and evenings, they developed those skills as they traveled across south-central Kansas conducting worksite visits, knocking on doors and making calls to talk to KOSE members.  You may have seen or heard from them yourself.
 
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New Pay Bill…Now With Even Smaller Increases

Last Friday, April 4, a new "pay bill" was introduced around 1:30am; it was set for hearing at 1:00pm that same day.  The bill was offered in response to an amendment Laura Kelly was offering to a bill on the floor.  The amendment would have provided a clean 1.5% pay increase with no corresponding cuts to longevity.  Senator Masterson from Andover represented he had an alternate pay bill and that Ways and Means could have a hearing on the bill that afternoon.  In response, Senator Kelly withdrew her amendment.

When the pay bill actually came out, it was not a clean bill.  

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State Workers: We Need Workplace Bullying Protections In New Bill

KOSE Asks Legislature To End Abusive Work Enviroments

The Kansas Organization of State of Employees (KOSE) and American Federation of Teachers-Kansas (AFT - Kansas) today are pleased to see the anti-workplace-bullying bill, HB 2720, introduced in the Kansas legislature.  HB 2720 is sponsored by Rep. Jerry Henry (D-Atchison) at the request of KOSE and AFT-Kansas and extends to state workers  the same legal protections against workplace bullying the legislature afforded to students, teachers, and school workers just last year.   

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Remember that 1.5% Pay Raise The Governor Promised You? It Just Vanished

The pay raise the Governor announced for classified state workers has already begun to disappear from state budgets.  This week budget subcommittees at the state legislature began deleting the pay raise from appropriation bills.  So far employees at  the Department of Corrections and the Department of Health and Environment have seen their pay raises vanish. 

Is there a silver lining here?  Maybe. 

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National Day of Action - Cold Weather Clothing Drive

KOSE members in Wichita participated in the National Day of Action on December 9th.  For the Day of Action, KOSE is held a Cold Weather Clothing Drive, collecting donations of hats, mittens/gloves, scarves and socks, which were presented to for Interfaith Ministries.  KOSE members believe that good jobs and strong communities are essential for working families.  Our participation in the National Day of Action demonstrated belief.  

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