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Fellow PEF members,
The members that support peffamilies and our website have accomplished quite a bit in the past few months. We have stood together and faced an impending layoff which would have been detrimental to the lives of 3,496 members and the family members that rely on their incomes.
When the first contract was voted down by the membership, many of us would not accept the outcome and the devastation we knew it would cause. The vote was unprecedented and came as a surprise to many members who were used to seeing our union contracts approved.
The record shows the first contract vote was influenced by a minority of disgruntled members who organized a coordinated grass roots movement, founded in anger and frustration, whose goal was to defeat the contract. Sadly, it worked and 3,496 members received their pink slips shortly thereafter.
How could this happen? Why was the anger over the Governor's plan to make cuts in State Government suddenly focused on us? Who were these cannibals that were willing to devour some of our own to sate the appetite of a disillusioned agenda? The truth doesn't come as a surprise to our group and you need only to check who is running for election against the current incumbents in the PEF leadership to refresh your memory. The name of their group has changed but the players remain the same.
Many of you may be surprised to see our elections tab has been removed from our website. This is the result of a request from the Chair of the PEF Elections Committee who wrote to PEFFAMILIES on January 23rd in response to a complaint received from " PEF members" that claimed we were endorsing President Ken Brynien, thereby giving the appearance that PEF was endorsing the Keeping - Members First caucus which is not fair according to campaign rules.
Subsequently, we were asked to remove the "PEF" from the peffamilies.com domain (not likely) or remove the elections tab. For the record, we have never presented ourselves as being an official "PEF" website and have taken measures to the contrary including a disclaimer on our opening page. So, in the interest of fair play and because we do not wish to give the folks who tried to put us on the unemployment line the wrong impression, we have decided to move all election related material to our new UNIONFAMILIES.COM site. This site will feature profiles, action items and the platforms of all current candidates as it relates to job retention.
Peffamilies will stick to defending the members and their families from the misfortunes of these ill gotten political winds. We will not apologize if what we represent continues to be a source of embarrassment and anger for the few members that need scapegoats for an economic situation that is not in their control. We have not forgotten the past and we will continue to remind the majority of the membership what almost befell us and who was responsible. Most importantly, we will never forget the compassion from the majority of the PEF membership that stepped up and saved us from hardship.
Finally, restacking and the Sage Commission recommendations have started and many members are coming to us for answers. As always, we encourage them to assist the Union with their volunteer efforts, write in campaigns, lobby days, rallies etc. PEFFAMILIES will remain a resource to those that feel threatened and can't find answers. The last thing we need is instability in the fabric of the union itself. We will remain a voice for the families; a voice that will not be censored or extinguished.