AFSCME Critical of Gov's State of State Speech

Feb 3, 2012

The state's largest public employees union says Governor Pat Quinn is two-faced.

Earlier this week during his state of the state address, Governor Pat Quinn laid out an agenda that includes tax cuts and increased education spending. The state's largest public employees union says that belies Quinn's reasoning for withholding members' pay raises.

AFSCME says Quinn's latest announcements of new programs don't square with his stance that Illinois is too broke to afford union pay raises. The union represents prison guards, welfare counselors, and thousands of clerical and administrative state employees. AFSCME says it's time for Quinn to change his mind and pay out the raises state workers were guaranteed.

A.J. Schmid was one of hundreds of AFSCME members who protested Thursday in front of the governor's capitol office. She teaches prisoners at the Shawnee Correctional Center. She says she's sick of hearing Quinn's rhetoric, like comments the governor made earlier this week regarding Indiana's right to work law. She says the governor is making those statements while standing in a broken contract.

AFSCME members tried to get into Quinn's office to give him a signed petition they called a "collection notice." But they were rebuffed. The Governor was in Northern Illinois. Court cases over the raise dispute are ongoing.