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Columbus Teachers March Against Tax Breaks For Wealthy Corporations

April 24, 2019 • COLUMBUS, Ohio — More than 1,000 members of the Columbus Education Association (CEA), labor allies, and community members marched through downtown Columbus today to send a message: fund the schools Columbus students deserve, not tax breaks for wealthy corporations that don’t need them.

The march stopped for brief rallies at the headquarters of CoverMyMeds™ and at City Hall.

“We cannot work together to build the schools Columbus students deserve if we offer handouts to wealthy corporations that don’t need them” — John Coneglio, CEA President

CoverMyMeds is a subsidiary of pharmaceutical giant McKesson, the 6th most profitable corporation in the United States. In July 2018, CoverMyMeds received a 100%, 15-year tax abatement worth up to $83 million for the construction of a new headquarters in the Franklinton neighborhood that one newspaper described as immense and glittering.

As a result of this single abatement, Columbus City Schools will lose an estimated $55.6 million in property taxes.

“Today we sent a message, loud and clear, that we’re serious about winning the schools Columbus Students Deserve”

“We cannot work together to build the schools Columbus students deserve if we offer handouts to wealthy corporations that don’t need them” said John Coneglio, high school social studies teacher and Columbus Education Association President. “We cannot continue to return time and time again to individual taxpayers to shoulder the burden of funding our schools while the richest among us don’t help push the cart.”

With negotiations for a new collective bargaining agreement underway, members of the Columbus Education Association have released a bargaining platform detailing their demands for the schools #ColumbusStudentsDeserve.

“As front-line educators, we see firsthand how our students struggle without the learning conditions, staffing, resources, and supports they need to succeed.” — Regina Fuentes, teacher at Eastmoor Academy High School.

The platform includes reduced class sizes and caseloads, adequate staffing to improve student access to support professionals, funding schools and saving taxpayers money by ending handouts to wealthy corporations, designated space in school buildings for art, music, and P.E., ending the school-to-prison pipeline by expanding alternative programs for discipline, and reducing teacher turnover by compensating educators as professionals.

“Today we sent a message, loud and clear, that we’re serious about winning the schools Columbus Students Deserve” said Regina Fuentes, teacher at Eastmoor Academy High School. “As front-line educators, we see firsthand how our students struggle without the learning conditions, staffing, resources, and supports they need to succeed.”

The Columbus Education Association will return to negotiations with Columbus City Schools at the end of April.

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The Columbus Education Association is the union representing more than 4,000 teachers, librarians, nurses, counselors, psychologists, and other education professionals in Columbus City Schools. The Columbus Education Association is a proud affiliate of the Ohio Education Association and the National Education Association.

 

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2019 Press Releases