By Jacqueline Marshall

Dear Sisters and Brothers;

We have persevered through a tumultuous period in our union.  We experienced five years without a pay increase and increases to our medical benefits. However, through your faith and confidence in my leadership, we were able to achieve a contract that provided for both a pay increase and reductions in our medical benefit contributions. Our new contract provides us with three years of stability in both wages and benefits, while enabling us to prepare to deal with a new administration after Mayor Nutter leaves office. And prepare we must!

Over the next three years, we must commit ourselves to be more organized, both internally and externally. We must utilize our established District Council committee (i.e. PEOPLE) to educate ourselves and advocate for the right candidate to occupy the second floor in City Hall. We just had the bad experience of a labor unfriendly Mayor Nutter and we must learn from our previous mistakes.

We must be active and outspoken in our communities and with our family and friends, to ensure that we maintain support in the court of public opinion. Many believe that we are fortunate to be employed by the City of Philadelphia and that we enjoy lavish perks and benefits. Very few realize that the services we provide on a daily basis are life altering for some and essential for others. People forget the time when public employees were grossly underpaid and taken advantage of by patronage and corruption. I remember and so should you.