Tag Archives: Chicago

Presidential candidate Warren slated to join striking Chicago teachers at rally

Presidential candidate Warren slated to join striking Chicago teachers at rallyWarren, a Massachusetts senator, is scheduled to visit with striking Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) teachers in the morning, according to her campaign. About 300,000 students have been out of school since Thursday when the system’s 25,000 teachers went on strike. Late on Monday, Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot called for the union to end the strike and make a deal with the Chicago Public Schools (CPS).



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Chicago Police Superintendent Seeks Investigation Into Himself

Chicago Police Superintendent Seeks Investigation Into HimselfIt was barely Thursday when someone in the Bridgeport neighborhood of Chicago called 911 to report a person asleep in an SUV at a stop sign.When police officers arrived around 12:30 a.m., they found their boss, Superintendent Eddie Johnson, "slumped over" in his city-issued Chevrolet Tahoe, according to officials and news reports.Officers did not see any signs of impairment, and Johnson, who reported parking his car after feeling lightheaded, was allowed to drive himself home, the police said.Later that day, the superintendent called for an internal investigation into what happened, citing the need for transparency. Speaking to reporters Thursday night, he blamed blood pressure medication for the episode.The superintendent called for an investigation because "whether you are police officer or a superintendent, all officers ought to be held to the highest standard," a Police Department spokesman, Anthony Guglielmi, said in a statement Thursday.But the episode took a turn on Friday after Mayor Lori Lightfoot told The Chicago Sun-Times that Superintendent Johnson disclosed to her that he had "a couple of drinks with dinner" before being found asleep in his vehicle.He was not given a sobriety test after officers roused him, and Lightfoot told The Sun-Times that she was awaiting the outcome of the internal investigation to determine if the responding officers skirted rules to protect their boss, and whether Johnson should be held responsible.In a separate statement Friday, Guglielmi said the police "have no indication of impropriety at this time," adding that "this question can only be answered by the internal affairs investigation," which he said was continuing.The mayor declined to say whether the superintendent should have been driving or given a field sobriety test, The Sun-Times reported. The mayor's office did not respond to requests for comment Saturday, and the superintendent could not be reached.The police said Johnson complained of feeling exhausted Wednesday. He sent his driver home that day, but said he should have had one with him.Johnson told reporters that he did not take his blood pressure medication after his doctor changed it this week. He said he threw out his old medication, but "failed to put the new medication in."The superintendent had a blood clot this past summer, The Tribune reported, and in 2017, he underwent a kidney transplant.This episode with the superintendent was the latest to draw attention to the Police Department. In 2018, an officer was convicted of second-degree murder in the fatal shooting of Laquan McDonald and, more recently, 63 men and women were exonerated after having been convicted on drug charges in arrests by two corrupt police officers.Johnson was named to the post in 2016. His predecessor, Garry F. McCarthy, was fired days after the release of the video of McDonald's shooting.This article originally appeared in The New York Times.(C) 2019 The New York Times Company



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Chicago strike means day off for some, emergency for others

Chicago strike means day off for some, emergency for othersChicago parents leaned on family, friends and community groups as 25,000 teachers in the nation’s third-largest school district went on strike this past week, canceling classes for more than 300,000 kids. For some families, the Chicago Teachers Union walkout meant a day off and a bit of inconvenience for parents juggling work schedules. Both Mayor Lori Lightfoot and union leaders said negotiators have several major disputes to resolve, including pay and benefits, class size, and school staffing.



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A day without teachers: 32,000+ educators in Chicago went on strike. Here's what happened

A day without teachers: 32,000+ educators in Chicago went on strike. Here's what happenedChicago Public Schools teachers went on strike Thursday morning, seeking smaller class sizes, more support staff and a pay raise.



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The Chicago teachers' strike shows how to go on offense against neoliberalism

The Chicago teachers' strike shows how to go on offense against neoliberalismChicago teachers led the battle against destructive reforms seven years ago – now they’re showing all working people left behind by cuts how to fight‘Together, the coordinated strikes have put more than 30,000 workers on the picket lines – more than 1% of the city’s population.’ Photograph: Xinhua/Barcroft MediaIn 2012, when Chicago teachers walked off the job in their first strike in 25 years, the cards were stacked against them, nationally and locally. Today, they’re on strike again – and on the offense against austerity.Seven years ago, Rahm Emanuel had just been elected mayor and was looking to deal the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU), who he saw as a barrier to privatizing the city’s education system, a crushing defeat. That agenda was shared by both Republicans and Democrats across the country, with a barrage of attacks on teachers’ unions, devastating budget cuts to schools and charter school networks – intended to undercut public schools and do an end run around their unions – rapidly multiplying.Yet after electing a new militant leadership in 2010 that pledged to fight not just for bread-and-butter issues like higher pay but a broad agenda of “educational justice” and opposition to austerity, Chicago teachers won that strike, inspiring educators and workers of all kinds across the country – and planting the seeds of future unrest in schools across West Virginia, Oklahoma, Arizona, Oakland, Denver and elsewhere, in the teachers’ strike wave that kicked off last year.Chicago teachers are again on strike, now against the recently elected mayor, Lori Lightfoot. As in 2012, their demands are focused on burning issues in their schools and the city as a whole rather than simply wages and benefits (a strategy that has been called “bargaining for the common good”). And they’re waging that fight alongside another striking union, SEIU Local 73, which represents bus aides, janitors, classroom assistants and other school staff – many of whom earn below-poverty wages.CTU’s staffing demands are straightforward: a nurse, counselor, librarian and social worker in every school. The current ratio of students to counselors, nurses and social workers in Chicago public schools (CPS) far exceeds professional association recommendations. The National Association of School Psychologists recommends one psychologist for every 700 students; last year, each CPS psychologist served 1,760. For nurses, the ratio is four times what is recommended; for social workers, nearly five times. The union is also demanding enforceable caps so that classes aren’t overcrowded, which CTU says is the case in nearly a quarter of all Chicago classrooms.The union is also connecting its bargaining to the city’s affordable housing crisis, demanding housing assistance for both its members and its students, nearly 16,000 of whom experience homelessness. The op-ed pages of the city’s newspapers have upbraided this proposal, but CTU argues that “to fully support our public schools, we must address the lack of sustainable, affordable housing in our city” – a problem faced by cities throughout the country.CTU is breaking new ground, both in the kinds of broad working-class demands it is putting forward and by striking alongside SEIU Local 73. Together, the coordinated strikes have put more than 30,000 workers on the picket lines – more than 1% of the city’s population. Yesterday, a sea of CTU red and SEIU purple swarmed the city’s downtown in the afternoon, with thousands on the streets for a mass march after morning school pickets.The union is up against Lightfoot, a political newcomer who won office earlier this year by campaigning as a progressive and running on an education agenda that borrowed heavily from CTU’s: an elected school board rather than one appointed by the mayor, a freeze on charter expansion and major investments in public schools. But Lightfoot’s progressive posturing is now running up against tens of thousands striking Chicago teachers and staff who want more than progressive rhetoric – they want hard commitments, put in writing and legally enforceable through their contract.If she continues to balk at union demands at the bargaining table, Lightfoot will probably see the goodwill she has maintained from average Chicagoans since taking office disappear. The signs don’t look good for her: a Chicago Sun-Times poll conducted just before the strike shows that the public is backing the CTU over the mayor and school board. The same was true for Rahm Emanuel in 2012.Critics on the school board and in mainstream media have responded with the common refrain that Chicago is broke and can’t afford such demands. But Chicago is awash in wealth – enough for Lightfoot to approve the giveaway of $ 1.3bn in public money to luxury real estate firm Sterling Bay for the mega-development project Lincoln Yards. CTU has long argued that the way to pay for their demands is clear: end these corporate giveaways and tax the rich.The nationwide neoliberal education reform movement was on the march when CTU struck in 2012. But after numerous corruption scandals, growing charter school unionization and strikes, and teacher walk-offs in states throughout the country, that movement is on its heels. Just as the Democratic party has been forced to at least feint left on issues like Medicare for All and free public college tuition because of Bernie Sanders’s presidential campaigns, the party has been forced to back off of its most fervent support for corporate education reform.Chicago teachers led the way in the fight against these destructive reforms seven years ago. Today, they’re showing educators around the country how to fight not only for themselves, but for all working people who have been left behind by budget cuts and the dismantling of the public sector.The education policy scholar Pauline Lipman once described Chicago as “the incubator, test case and model for the neoliberal urban education agenda”. This week, teachers are working to make sure Chicago is where that agenda ends. * Miles Kampf-Lassin is an editor at In These Times. * Micah Uetricht is the managing editor of Jacobin and host of its podcast The Vast Majority. He is the author of Strike for America: Chicago Teachers Against Austerity and coauthor of the forthcoming Bigger Than Bernie: How We Go From the Sanders Campaign to Political Revolution in Our Lifetimes



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The Latest: Probe after Chicago chief found lying in car

The Latest: Probe after Chicago chief found lying in carChicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson has asked the department to investigate his actions after he was found lying down in a car near his home. Police department spokesman Anthony Guglielmi says Johnson indicated he parked his car after feeling lightheaded. The 59-year-old Johnson underwent kidney transplant surgery in August 2017.



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Chicago teens stage 'die-in' to demand action on climate change; one man arrested

Chicago teens stage 'die-in' to demand action on climate change; one man arrestedDozens of Chicago teens gathered across from Trump International Hotel and marched to City Hall Monday to demand action on climate change.



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Second man found guilty in the murder of 9-year-old Tyshawn Lee in Chicago

Second man found guilty in the murder of 9-year-old Tyshawn Lee in ChicagoOn Friday, Corey Morgan was found guilty of first degree murder in the killing of 9-year-old Tyshawn Lee in Chicago.



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Jury finds Chicago gang member guilty in the murder of 9-year-old Tyshawn Lee

Jury finds Chicago gang member guilty in the murder of 9-year-old Tyshawn LeeA jury found gang member Drwight Boone-Doty guilty Thursday in the murder of Tyshawn Lee, a 9-year-old boy was shot and killed.



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Terrorism charge filed against man who crashed car into Woodfield Mall near Chicago

Terrorism charge filed against man who crashed car into Woodfield Mall near ChicagoThe man who slammed his SUV into a suburban Chicago mall has been formally charged with terrorism and criminal damage to property, authorities said.



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