Public Employees Outraged at Pension-Gutting Plan

August 28, 2012

For Immediate Release

Following is a statement from Dave Low, chairman of Californians for Retirement Security, a coalition representing 1.5 million public employees and retirees.

“We are outraged that a Democratic Governor and Democratic Legislature are taking a wrecking ball to retirement security for teachers, firefighters, school employees, and police officers. While we support common-sense changes to end spiking and abuse of the system, this package is unfair and wrong.

This is the largest rollback in providing a secure retirement to teachers, firefighters, and police officers in California history, reducing benefits to pre-Reagan era benefits. It will hurt all Californians by making it more difficult to attract and keep experienced teachers in the classroom and veteran police officers and firefighters on our streets. Public workers have done more than their fair share during the past several years of lean budgets, taking pay cuts, furloughs, and paying more for health care. This proposal hurts hundreds of thousands of low- and middle-class workers who negotiated in good faith and now will be hit with more cuts and takeaways, getting nothing in return.

This is far more than ‘low hanging fruit.’ This is the fruit, the branch, the tree trunk, and the roots. This is a sweeping proposal that undermines collective bargaining, and is being enacted unilaterally thru the political process rather than in good faith negotiations at the bargaining table.”