Dear Senator Hopper,
I am writing to you to ask you to protect my right to bargain and earn fair wages and benefits through my teaching union. I have been teaching in Wisconsin for 38 years. I am nearing retirement and frankly I am afraid what this bill will mean for me and my family. I have one boy in High School who will be going to college next year and I have one in college now. The burden of paying for their educations has been a strain on us already. If I should lose any of my salary I don't believe I can maintain what I have worked hard to accomplish. If I have to pay more in insurance when I retire it will be more than just "tightening our belts." The money that my husband and I were saving for their educations was lost in the recession when our investments collapsed.
I also have a son and daughter in law who are in their early years of teaching. They have just bought their own home and with the economy the way it has been they have already had difficulties securing their employment. Because they are young teachers they have been at the bottom in seniority and have already been laid off and had to find other employment. If they have to take the cuts in pay that this budget would require, they may lose their home.
Over the years, I have had my salary frozen, my insurance coverage reduced, and many a time we chose as a group to hang on to our benefits rather than take a pay raise. I have a Master's Degree and 30 credits beyond that and I believe I am worth my salary. I spend $1,000.00 + of my own to get books that my students like to read, to buy morning snacks for my students to eat, and most of the other supplies that I use each year in my classroom. I am not being a greedy person, but I would like to maintain what I have.
Please work with the unions and other legislators to come up with a better solution. Please vote no to Governor Walker's bill.