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AFTNJ President Donna M. Chiera statement on proposed attacks on public worker pension and health insurance

“While uncertain economic times means elected leadership must make difficult decisions, New Jersey residents are already suffering at least partly because of President Trump’s elimination of the State and Local Taxes deduction as punishment for voting against him and his party.

If New Jersey’s elected leadership believes the appropriate response is to further penalize those of us who work in the public sector—including dedicated teachers, caring nurses and courageous first responders—in order to give tax breaks to millionaires, they are governing in a very irresponsible manner and leading us in the wrong direction.

The 30,000 education workers in AFT New Jersey stand opposed to weakening the pension system with a hybrid approach and further undermining collective bargaining by legislating increased health insurance costs. These diminutions of well-deserved benefits will discourage young adults from seeking employment in public sector positions and further fuel shortages in those entering the teaching and nursing professions.”