Veteran UTLA leader (and Duffy crony) Julie Washington finished first in the race for president of United Teachers Los Angeles, but did not win enough votes to avoid a runoff. Washington, the outgoing vice president, won 44% of the vote. Warren Fletcher was second, with 37.3%. Turn out for the election was abysmal, with only 17% of members returning ballots, perhaps an indication of overall teacher disillusionment with the union.
Washington is seen by many LA teachers as a UTLA insider and part of the problem with the entrenched UTLA bureaucracy. LA teachers are facing a continuation of mass conversions of their schools to private charters, as well as teacher furloughs, mass layoffs, and attacks on seniority and collective bargaining. The Duffy/Weingarten administration, while making militant public statements against these attacks on teachers and students, did very little to mobilize teachers to take effective actions against these attacks. A Washington victory is seen by many as a continuation of UTLA impotence and irrelevance.
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