A Message From Long Island Region President Nick LaMorte

Let me start by wishing all of you a happy, and blessed, new year!

Most people consider a new year a time for renewal. That is especially the case this year because CSEA members are voting for new region and statewide officers.

It doesn’t matter who you vote for, only that you participate in the process.

CSEA’s election season is our opportunity to celebrate our union’s democracy. Some other unions don’t get to choose their leaders, you do. Please don’t take your unique union rights for granted; be sure to vote.

Also coming up in the new year is the U.S. Census count.

It is incredibly important to fill out your census data because that information is compiled by the federal government and used to support policy making, for the next 10 years.

For example, census numbers determine the amount of federal funding states and local communities receive.

Census data also affects our political representation; the information is used to reapportion seats in the U.S. House of Representatives.

You should receive your census paperwork by April 1, 2020. Not filling out the paperwork will be doing yourself, our union and our state a tremendous disservice. For the first time this year, you can also fill out the information online.

Also, this month, we commemorate The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday.

Dr. King was a great American, who fought for social justice and labor rights, and has a direct connection to AFSCME.

When Dr. King was assassinated in 1968, he was in Memphis, Tenn. supporting striking AFSCME-represented sanitation workers.

The night before his murder, he delivered his famous “I’ve Been to the Mountaintop” address to the striking workers and their supporters.

I ask that you honor Dr King’s life and legacy by reflecting on the sacrifices he made to make this country a better place.

Lastly, the winter months are when we customarily have to deal with snow and icy roads.

I’d like to thank our members who brave the inclement weather to successfully complete their professional obligations to our area.

CSEA highway, maintenance and grounds workers brave the dangerous conditions in order to help the public get back to their daily lives after a storm.

We also have members who work as support staff and a host of other positions who don’t have the luxury of staying home when the weather turns for the worst.

I truly want to thank every single one of you for your hard work and devotion to serving the community.

Allow me to wish everyone a happy and healthy new year!

With the strength of our membership, I am hopeful that 2020 will be CSEA’s best year yet!