The $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan has passed!
This package is the aid that we have been fighting for throughout the pandemic, and it will provide New York and its local governments with the funding needed to prevent potentially devastating cuts.
Thank you to every CSEA member who attended a car rally, emailed, called, or wrote to an elected official over the past months as we fought for this funding.
What does this mean for New Yorkers?
- $12.6 billion in direct aid for New York State with an additional $10.6 billion for local governments in New York – Click here to find out how much your local government will receive;
- $9 billion in aid to schools with an additional $1.6 billion for colleges and universities;
- $4 billion for healthcare, vaccines, and testing;
- Direct payments of up to $1,400 per person (for those with a maximum income of $80,000 for individuals, $120,000 for single parents, or $160,000 for couples), with an additional $1,400 per dependent;
- An expansion of the child tax credit from the previous level of $2,000 per child to as much as $3,600 per child and allowing the benefit to be paid out over the course of the year;
- An extension of additional unemployment payments of $300 per week through September 6; and
- Funding for transit systems, small businesses, performing arts centers, and more.
Work Place Safety
Work Zone Safety
Working on or near roads is one of the most dangerous environments workers face. In addition to the number of hazards of the work itself, workers are forced to grapple with reckless and unsafe drivers who endanger hundreds of New Yorkers each year. This problem is only getting worse. It is time for New York to protect our workers, improve safety in highway work zones, and curb unsafe driving behavior.
A work zone speed camera program makes sense for New York as a way to make our roads safer for workers and drivers alike, and to ensure that the dedicated CSEA members that make our roads safe for travel get to go home safe at the end of the day.
Discipline Rights for Part-Time Teaching Assistants
Under current New York State Law, part-time teaching assistants can be fired for any reason and have no rights to a hearing, unless it is specified in a union contract. All other educational, municipal, and state employees, regardless of job, have discipline rights written in state law.
Click here to ask the legislature to support A. 6978 / S. 6206 which will guarantee part-time teaching assistants the right to a hearing if they are facing termination by a school district or a BOCES.
Civil Service Credit Equity
Under New York State law, veterans and disabled veterans can receive additional points on civil service exams in recognition of their service. Unfortunately, these benefits are currently limited to veterans that served in specific times and theatres of war. Ask the legislature to ensure that all veterans who honorably served our country be recognized for their service.
Support Probation Officers
Probation officers play a vital role in keeping our communities safe. While facing many of the same risks and threats as other law enforcement personnel, Probation officers are not eligible for the same medical and wage protections that other law enforcement and first responders are entitled to. This bill would allow, at local option, counties to offer full pay and benefits for county probation officers who are injured on the job.
Don’t Eliminate Corrections Staff
The New York State Legislature is considering legislation (A.1962 – Barrett / S.5477 – Benjamin) that would make it easier for counties to eliminate staff at county correctional facilities.
These decisions would be made at a time when it is impossible to distinguish the impact of COVID-19 on jail populations from any general decline in the inmate census.
CSEA was very successful in securing much needed federal aid due to members and retirees contributing to our PEOPLE Program. Through PEOPLE we are able to lobby our congressional representatives and have a strong voice on federal issues. If you are not already a PEOPLE contributor, please learn more by contacting Kim Wallace-Russo 518 436-8622 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
VOICE Child Care
In New York State, child care providers are required to be paid by a county in the form of a paper check when they are paid for providing care to a child who receives a subsidy. There is no option to be paid by direct deposit, despite all of the benefits of this method of payment. This leads to delayed and lost checks, and financial hardship for many providers.
Click here to send a letter to your legislators to pass A. 5840 (Clark) / S. 5162 (Brisport) that will require all counties to offer child care providers the opportunity to be paid by direct deposit.
NY Health Act
Don’t take away my health coverage
The New York Health Act is a proposal in the NYS Legislature to create a universal single payer health plan in New York State. Under this plan, all New Yorkers would be under the same health plan, including those with health insurance negotiated in a collective bargaining agreement or provided by their employer. Under this proposal, you would lose your current health plan and could end up paying more.
Click here to send a letter to your legislators.