On Monday January 23rd on the south steps of the State Capitol in Austin, TSEU held a press conference to publicize the issue of low state employee pay and the fact that thousands of employees receive public assistance benefits such as food stamps and Medicaid.
State Representative and TSEU ally Donna Howard (Austin) kicked off the event by providing opening remarks. Rep Howard and her staff collected the data to find the actual number of state employees and their children who are currently receiving public assistance benefits. TSEU Board member from the Lufkin State Supported Living center, Yolanda White shared stories about the struggles that her and her coworkers deal with while living on low incomes from the state.
TSEU Treasurer Anthony Brown, echoed the needs of state employees to be able to advance in their careers and provide for their families. Following the statements of TSEU members, Representative Mary Gonzales from El Paso shared her appreciation for TSEU members and their hard work fighting for state employees as well as her commitment to help fight for fair pay. At the closing of the press conference, Dwight Clark, who is the Legislative Director for State Senator Jose Menendez, unveiled Senate Bill 571. If passed, this bill would establish a salary career ladder for all state agency employees that currently make under $75,000 year. This career ladder will provide a pay raise for these employees each year for their first 10 years of service.
SB 571 by Sen. Jose Menendez will make much needed steps towards providing a living wage to all state employees. The Texas Legislature will not pass SB 571 unless they are pressured from thousands of organized state employees across the state.
WHAT YOU CAN DO NOW!
- Call Your State Senator and tell them:
“State employees need a living wage. Thousands of employees and their children are currently receiving public assistance benefits due to low pay. We ask that the Texas Senate support Senator Menendez’s bill SB 571 to provide a salary career ladder to all state employees who earn under $75,000 per year.” CLICK HERE | Locate elected officials with your home address
- Ask your coworkers to Join TSEU – Download a TSEU membership form
If we want to pass SB 571 into law then we need to get more state employees off of the sidelines and into the fight for better pay. The more state employees who join TSEU, the more influence we will have on the legislature to pass this career ladder bill. You can download a TSEU membership form here.
- Get your Lobby Day 2017 ticket and be at the Capitol on Wednesday, April 12. Details and ticket information