Teachers entitled to longevity raises, arbitrator finds

Karen Yi, NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

NEWARK — An arbitrator has found the Newark school district violated terms of the 2012 teachers contract that received unified praise from Gov. Chris Christie and national union leaders for being a landmark agreement between often warring parties.

Responding to a series of grievances filed by the Newark Teachers Union in 2013, an arbitrator last month said the Newark school district violated certain provisions, including failing to give employees promised payments for longevity.

“This contract was the culmination of very difficult but good-faith negotiations. But the state broke its word and its trust by blatantly refusing to implement what it agreed to do,” said John Abeigon, president of the Newark Teachers Union. “The arbitrator’s decision is a huge victory for Newark teachers and sends a loud message that it’s not OK to violate a signed contract.”

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