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Rainbow PUSH Coalition’s annual Labor Breakfast

Taking aim at mayor

Miller Photography

Mulgrew’s comments draw chuckles from (from left) Hanley, Alvarez and the Rev. Jackson.

UFT President Michael Mulgrew blasted Mayor Bloomberg at the Rainbow PUSH Coalition’s annual Labor Breakfast at the Roosevelt Hotel on Feb. 1. Mulgrew highlighted the high-profile battles with three different unions — the UFT, the Council of School Supervisors and Administrators, and the school bus drivers union, Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1181 — in which the mayor is now engaged. “With each one the mayor steps in and blows up negotiations,” Mulgrew said, referring to the teacher evaluation agreements with the UFT and CSA that the mayor torpedoed at the last minute, and to Bloomberg’s refusal to negotiate with Local 1181 to end the ongoing school bus strike that has left more than 150,000 students without bus service since Jan. 16. Other speakers on the panel — among them New York City Central Labor Council President Vinnie Alvarez, ATU International President Larry Hanley, City Councilman Robert Jackson and SEIU 32BJ President Hector Figueroa — also took aim at the mayor. Jackson called on those in attendance to support the bus drivers. “If you don’t stand up for 1181 today, who’s going to stand up for you tomorrow?” he asked. Founded and led by longtime civil rights advocate Rev. Jesse Jackson Sr., the Rainbow PUSH Coalition brings together labor unions and community organizations to fight for civil rights and for economic justice for working people.

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