Thanks to a recent law, known as Senate 1456, hundreds of public schools will soon close, all over the island. Thousands of teachers will be fired, and lose their pensions as well.
In response, the teachers of Puerto Rico have organized a massive demonstration for tomorrow, Tuesday Nov. 17. Starting at 10 am, thousands of teachers will march from the Capital Building to the Governor’s Mansion in San Juan.
Everyone in Puerto Rico – the entire general public – is welcome to attend.
The “privatization” of its public school system is an early step in Gov. Garcia Padilla’s plan to hand over the entire physical infrastructure of Puerto Rico, to hedge funds that “own” the island’s $73 public debt.
This struggle has been fought for years. In February 2006, the Federación de Maestros de Puerto Rico (FMPR) opposed Law 45, which prohibited teachers and teachers’ unions from striking.
FMPR members demonstrate in 2006, for their right to strike
For the past ten years the FMPR has been clear, consistent and firm: they do not want U.S. hedge funds to own the education system of Puerto Rico, and to run it on a for-profit basis.
Despite this clear opposition, Gov. Garcia Padilla supported Senate 1456…even though the sponsor of the bill, Sentor Eduardo Bhatia, admitted that Senate 1456 will result in the closure of more schools, the firing of more teachers, and that hedge funds will hire and fire teachers at will.
Senator Eduardo Bhatia, sponsor of Senate 1456
Make no mistake about it.
Senate 1456 is part of the WAR AGAINST ALL PUERTO RICANS.
Tomorrow in San Juan, on Nov. 17 at 10 a.m., everyone is urged to MARCH and SUPPORT the public school teachers of Puerto Rico.