“Summertime is incredibly difficult for me,” says LAUSD Special Ed Assistant Bart Weil

Bart Weil
Special Ed Asst
White Middle School

Dear sisters and brothers:

Summertime is incredibly difficult for me. I haven’t had a summer school job since 2008 (the same year the economy took a nosedive). I can’t find summer work (“Why should we hire you to work here when you’re just going to quit in August to go back to your ‘real’ job??”). I even applied to work at Magic Mountain and Disneyland, since theme parks are supposed to have “seasonal employment,” but even they wouldn’t hire me. I go into debt every summer. Every November, I’m still paying bills from June and July.

And I know I’m not alone. Too many of you struggle every year, just like I do. Join me as we let State Senators know that dedicated school workers need a summer unemployment insurance safety net. CLICK HERE.

We continue to make progress on the Summer Unemployment Insurance for School Workers bill (AB 2197), which, if it becomes law, will be a big step to bringing some relief.

Our bill made it through  the full Assembly earlier this month. This was the first time the Assembly approved our important bill and the first time the Senate will hear about our struggles during the summer. Click here to read more about what’s happening with this bill.

Join me and other SEIU Local 99 members who will be meeting with State Senators for local district lobby visits. When legislators hear directly from us about how crazy it is that we are denied unemployment insurance benefits, we have been able to get them to agree that this law must be changed. Click here to join us on one of these local appointments with our State Senators.

It’s important to remember that if the Senate approves AB 2197 and the Governor signs it, we will still have a lot of work to do to turn “cruel summer” into “cool summer.” We must:

  • Expand out fight to ensure there is funding for benefits in the state budget.
  • Push for increased access to summer school, which helps students and families while it creates more summer jobs for us.
  • Continue to share resources with each other, such as those listed here.

I want to personally thank every SEIU Local 99 member who has been on one of our “Midnight Rides” lobby trips to Sacramento, sent emails, signed petitions and post cards, made calls to legislators and  appeared at hearings for Summer Unemployment Insurance.

Together, we’re doing this!

In Solidarity,

Bart Weil

P.S. We’re also looking for SEIU Local 99 members to join us for a local lobby visit with Assemblymember Mike Gipson to urge him to support AB 2835, which would require public employers to provide all newly hired public employees with a thorough orientation during the regular workday and at the worksite. This orientation would ensure that public employees (like school workers!) know our rights, job protections, employee benefits and safety plans. Click here if you’d like to join us.


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