The time has come again for UFT members to choose their union representatives at the school level. UFT members in each school or functional chapter must conduct chapter elections to determine who will represent them for the next three years.
UFT members have a right to run for office, nominate other members and vote for candidates.
“Please participate in your chapter election,” said UFT President Michael Mulgrew in a letter to members. “Those you elect will be responsible for communicating your views, priorities and ideas to the union, and also for communicating back to you decisions made by the Delegate Assembly. The life of your chapter — and your union — depends on your participation in this important election.”
Every school chapter and functional chapter has a chapter leader. School chapter leaders are the union’s representatives on the front lines, making sure each school has good working conditions and strong morale. Functional chapter leaders work to ensure that members who are not teachers have a strong advocate for their specific needs.
All schools and functional chapters also must elect delegates to represent members at the Delegate Assembly, the highest policy-making body of the UFT. One delegate is elected for every 60 members. Teachers elect their delegates at school. Guidance counselors, paraprofessionals and other functional chapter members may stand for election as delegates from their functional chapters. Chapter leaders also serve as delegates.
Every school is entitled to elect a paraprofessional representative as well. Only paraprofessionals may nominate, run and vote for paraprofessional representatives.
The elections of chapter leader, delegates to the Delegate Assembly and para representatives are conducted by secret ballot under the supervision of an election committee. Candidates for chapter leader and DA delegate may not serve on the election committee.
When the chapter conducts an election, there must be clear notice of the process posted or discussed at a union meeting. Those elected will serve from July 1, 2018, through June 30, 2021.