Announcements October 10, 2010

8 Oct 2014

 AFSCME Sub-chapter 161

 Dear member:

 We will meet again at Ruby Tuesdays Restaurant at 5203 Old Orchard Road, Skokie, Il. On Wednesday, Oct 15th.The meeting starts at 11 AM.

Our speaker will be Ms. Emily Stewart. She is the Director of the Illinois Alliance of Retired Americans. The ILARA’s focus is principally on threats to Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid. This year, it is drawing the public’s attention to Bruce Rauner’s threat to our safety net programs in Illinois. Last month, it held a demonstration outside of Rauner’s loop campaign office. It was an organized action done by union retirees and union workers.

The balance of the meeting will be to discuss how to get out the member vote in order to defeat Rauner. We will have to vote on spending money for a mailer to all members.

 I have been phone banking at the Council 31 office. The calls are going to AFSCME members and retirees in Cook, Lake, and Dupage counties. As of Tuesday, October 7th, we have reached 4000 of 16,000 members. The phones are being manned by workers and retirees. They are a great group to be working with every night. Roughly 80-85% of the members we reach are going to hold their noses and vote for Quinn. 5% are for Rauner and the rest haven’t made up their minds.

As of last night, I learned that Chicago Federation of Labor is calling the race a dead heat. Rauner at 44%, Quinn at 42%. Keep in mind, 6 months ago, Rauner had a comfortable 2 digit lead in the polls. In the CFL’s view this race will be won by the side that turns out their voters.

Charlie Hogan

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Click to go directly to our Election 2014 page.

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Announcements, October 2, 2014

From: Charles Hogan President
AFSCME Retirees, Sub-chapter 161
October 2, 2014

This blogsite (Election 2014) contains material given to me at the PEOPLE Political conference held in Peoria as well as additional information handed to Sub-Chapter Presidents at our quarterly meeting in Springfield.

With last year’s legislative assault on our pensions and benefits, we have one option. The resolution adopted by the conference is provided below.  On the convention floor in Peoria, I watch one Local President after another rise to endorse Pat Quinn. None of them were Quinn’s friends. Their message was that they would vote for Quinn on the 4th in order to defeat Rauner. On the 5th of November, we go back to fighting Quinn’s and Madigan’s policies.

Please take the time to read the posted material, which we expect to update regularly. It can be a sanity shield. During the next five weeks, you will be targeted with a lot of political messages. Their effect will confuse and discourage undecided voters. The hope is that they will stay home and not vote.

But this isn’t a usual off year election. The budget problems in Springfield, combined with the effects of lawsuits of Harris v Quinn, & Citizen’s United have emboldened our enemies. They want to defeat AFSCME. Money is no object. If they can cripple public employee unions as they did in Wisconsin, Indiana, and Michigan, we could lose our pensions and benefits.

We have a two part plan:

• A person to person effort to get votes for Pat Quinn.

• Then calls to our legislators explaining what our pensions mean to us. They need to hear from constituents like us now and after the election. We want to make them understand that we won’t disappear after November 4th. We aren’t going to pack up and wait for the 2016 election.

Charlie Hogan


RESOLUTION ADOPTED BY THE DELEGATES TO THE AFSCME PEOPLE CONFERENCE—SEPTEMBER 13, 2014 WHEREAS: Republican gubernatorial candidate Bruce Rauner has launched an unrelenting, dishonest and mean-spirited attack on public employees and their unions; and WHEREAS: Bruce Rauner has made clear his deep-seated hostility to workers’ rights, whether in the public or private sector, calling for the establishment of “Right-to-Work” zones in Illinois, which would drastically undermine the economic security of working people; and WHEREAS: Bruce Rauner is trampling on a long tradition — going back to Abraham Lincoln — of Illinois Republicans who respected working people and honest labor, including support for the right to collective bargaining; and WHEREAS: Bruce Rauner has repeatedly attacked the very existence of unions that represent teachers, sanitation workers, correctional officers, caregivers, firefighters, and other public employees, stating that in his view, “by their nature…they’re immoral”; and WHEREAS: Bruce Rauner is a hedge fund billionaire who made a good part of his vast wealth from public pension funds, but now argues that public pensions should be completely abolished; and WHEREAS: Bruce Rauner has a documented record as a cutthroat venture capitalist who operated private care facilities that were found to have caused unnecessary suffering and death to hundreds of their elderly and disabled residents; who bought up companies and shipped their jobs overseas; and who sought to cheat his workers out of the wages and benefits they had earned; and WHEREAS: Bruce Rauner’s campaign is based on a web of lies and half-truths which mask an agenda that would slash funding for education, shift the tax burden from the wealthy to middle income families, and cut the wages of hundreds of thousands of working people; and WHEREAS:

Bruce Rauner owns nine homes and belongs to a wine club that costs $140,000 annually just to join, yet rails against the modest pay and benefits of public employees; and WHEREAS: Bruce Rauner says he will cut the pay and benefits of public employees, vowing to force them out on strike to impose his will; and WHEREAS: Bruce Rauner represents a profound threat to the decent standard of living and basic workplace rights that AFSCME members have fought so hard to attain; and WHEREAS: AFSCME Council 31 has pledged to do everything possible to defeat Bruce Rauner; and WHEREAS: Critical to defeating Bruce Rauner is ensuring that as many citizens as possible cast their votes for Democratic gubernatorial candidate, Pat Quinn; and WHEREAS: The serious differences that AFSCME has had with Governor Quinn over the past four years cannot stand as a barrier to taking the necessary actions to defeat Bruce Rauner. THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED: That AFSCME Council 31 recommends support for Pat Quinn for governor of the


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Announcements September 12, 2014

13 September 2014

AFSCME Sub-chapter 161

Dear member;

We will meet again at Ruby Tuesdays Restaurant at 5203 Old Orchard Road, Skokie, Il. On Wednesday, September 17th.The meeting starts at 11 AM.

Our guest speaker will be Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund field Representative, Ms. Bonnie Shadid. Whether an IMRF member or a non-member, you will find her presentation interesting and timely. IMRF isn’t setup like other public pensions. Currently, it is 96% funded. In spite of its fiscal strength, Representative Deborah Conroy attempted to pass a law that would have eliminated the 13th check. This is only one of many attempts to alter a perfectly sound retirement Fund. Which leads me to conclude that we must stay vigilant while building our ability to protect our pensions.

This weekend, I will be attending the state-wide PEOPLE conference in Peoria, IL. There was a last minute request from Council 31 limiting retiree attendance to Sub-Chapter Presidents. There was an upsurge in the number of Local officers attending this conference. It’s a healthy sign of interest among the working members. There is a lot of work to be done before, during, and after this critical election by workers and retirees.

I will have a conference report for the meeting and a post at our website for those who can’t attend the meeting. There will be additional reports for you to read. The CTBA has 2 reports. One analyzing the budget passed by the Illinois legislature. The second analyzing Rauner’s plan for Illinois.

See you at the meeting.

Charles Hogan, President


Click here to go to the CBTA home page (from where you can go to their specific reports).

Click here to go directly to the CBTA analysis of Bruce Rauner’s Blueprint.



The following message was sent to all members on our email list:

From: “Roberta Lynch, AFSCME Council 31″ <>
Date: September 2, 2014 at 5:23:30 PM CDT
Subject: A warning from Wisconsin
AFSCME e-Action Network

Four years ago, Scott Walker became governor of Wisconsin and launched an all-out assault on public employees. He pushed through legislation stripping state, university and city/county workers of their right to bargain collectively. The impact was immediate and devastating.

Now, billionaire CEO Bruce Rauner is running for Illinois governor and vowing to copy Walker’s extreme agenda. Our neighbors to the north have a personal message about what this would mean for AFSCME members here. Watch this brand-new video to hear directly from public-service workers in Wisconsin:

Wisc. video

After you’ve watched, here are three steps you can take to help spread the word and make a difference:

  1. Share this new video on Facebook.
  2. Email the video to your co-workers and friends.
  3. Sign up as a volunteer in your area to help stop Bruce Rauner.

In unity,

Roberta Lynch
Executive director
AFSCME Council 31


Click here to sign up for the AFSCME Council 31 Action Center.

Click here to tell a friend
about the AFSCME Council 31 Action Center.

Click here to unsubscribe.
Please do not reply to this e-mail. The box is not monitored for replies.


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Update, August 24, 2014

The Member’s Forum contains new material from Walter Esler.

There are now additional links (see sidebar), provided by Chaya Rubenstein who visited our meeting on August 20. Ms. Rubenstein is a member of S.O.R.E. (Skokie Organization of Retired Educators).

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Announcements August 15, 2014

13 August 2014


AFSCME Sub-chapter 161


Dear member;

We will meet again at Ruby Tuesdays Restaurant at 5203 Old Orchard Road, Skokie, Il. on Wednesday, August 20th.The meeting starts at 11 AM. Our guest speaker will be Council 31’s John Cameron. John is Director of Political and Community Relations. This Fall, he will be organizing the regional PEOPLE meetings. Retiree Sub-chapter 161 is in region 1. This region consists of Chicago locals and Sub-chapters as well as those of the nearby suburbs.

On Thursday, August 28th, our PEOPLE Chair and I will meet with other PEOPLE delegates to make recommendations to the statewide PEOPLE Executive committee regarding endorsements in state legislative races.

This election is important to us. The attacks on public employees and retirees have intensified this year. So have our efforts. As of today, I’ve contacted more than 75% of our members. By September 1st, the phone volunteers will be organized into groups that will call their legislator. In past efforts, small groups attended lobby days, town hall meetings, or made office visits. These phone volunteer/constituents will add their voices to ours.

During the past 2 weeks, volunteer members joined me to attend a picnic with the Skokie Organization of retired Educators. Their president is Fred Klonski, of Klonski’s Blog fame ( I’m inviting them to our meeting. Four of us worked with the Jane Addams Senior Caucus. We went to the State fair in Springfield to help them register voters and sign up support for raising the minimum wage.

Voter registration, voter education, and maxing our senior turnout will be our goal in the weeks ahead. All of you have a part to play.


Charles Hogan, President


New to our website:

Members Forum now contains new posts by Walt Esler and Charlie Hogan:

In addition to weekly “Alerts”, the link to Alliance for Retired Americans now includes celebratory notes for the 79th anniversary of Social Security.

There is now a link to Fred Klonsky’s blog.

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Announcements July 10, 2014

From President Charlie Hogan:

7 July 2014

AFSCME Sub-chapter 161

Dear member:

We will meet again at Ruby Tuesdays Restaurant at 5203 Old Orchard Road, Skokie,Il. on Wednesday, July 16th. The meeting starts at 11 AM.

Our speaker will be Ms. Lori Clark of the Jane Addams Senior Caucus. The Caucus is a grass roots organization lead by concerned seniors in the Chicago metropolitan area. In past rallies, town hall meetings and retiree focused events, I would meet members of the Caucus who where running or attending the event. Their priorities are affordable senior housing, improving in-home healthcare and insuring on-site social workers in senior buildings. Because of mutual concerns regarding healthcare, I’ve asked Ms. Clark to brief us on past and present JASC activities. She is also coming to meet us and learn about our work.

This past week’s political news has presented opportunities and threats that I want to cover in remarks before the floor is opened for discussion. I want to hear your ideas on informing our friends and families about the serious financial situation in Springfield. Illinois’ mainstream media is busy cranking out blame-the-pensionors/public unions stories.

Our job will be to counter the media negativity through one-on-one education and to work with our members and other allies to create the pressure, the will for real reform in Springfield.

Council 31 political staff will be organizing a GOTV effort. They have asked me to educate all our members about how to vote early and by absentee ballot. So consider how we find and deliver votes like a precinct captain. Then how to build and maintain pressure for reform. The state Supreme Court decision gave us an opportunity to re-focus the Legislature on the real problem of solving the structural deficit with a Fair Tax. The November vote is critical.

Charles Hogan, President


Recent comments by members Walt Esler and Charlie Hogan can now be viewed on the Members Forum page.


From: “Illinois State Retirement System” <>

Sent: Monday, July 7, 2014 2:31:56 PM

Subject: New SRS Member Website

The Illinois State Retirement Systems (SRS) is pleased to announce a new interactive Member Website ( ) for our retirees and survivors.   The announcement of the new SRS Member Website will be mailed to all retirees and survivors the week of July 14th .

Use this secure website to access real-time account details and quickly manage your account, including:

  • View and print your Monthly Annuity Pay Stub (The June ’14 pay stub is available today and July ’14 pay stub will be available on July 18th.)
  • Review your SRS membership record
  • View and update your email address and phone number
  • View and print SERS forms
  • Review your 2014 Annual Benefit Statement
  • View insurance enrollment and deduction information

Additional features and enhancements to our Member Website will be implemented over the next year.   Attached are detailed instructions and Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) to assist you with logging into our member website.  In addition, we have included a link below to view an instructional video.   Please send your comments/questions to:  We appreciate your feedback and assistance in testing our new Member Website.   Thank you!!

Instructional Video

Support Contact Info

Below are the contact phone numbers and email addresses for the SRS Member Services website:

Technical Support   SRS Help Desk             (217) 782-4202

SERS Support           Member Contact        (217) 524-0389


To view a message about the AFSCME 41st International Convention, click here.

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