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WV teacher, school service personnel unions split


Joe White (WV School Service Personnel Association); Randi Weingarten (AFT); Christine Campbell (AFT-WV)


As West Virginia teachers and service personnel seek to stop drastic impending state health insurance benefit cuts, the union that brought them together for about seven years and claimed to be the state’s largest has split.

West Virginia School Service Personnel Association Executive Director Joe White said his union’s 11-member executive committee voted unanimously in December to break with the American Federation of Teachers, which traditionally has represented educators in West Virginia.

He said the national AFT organization has, in what he calls “an old-fashioned union war,” responded by working to recruit members from his union — which includes many non-instruction school workers like cooks, custodians, secretaries, bus drivers and maintenance employees — into the AFT’s West Virginia arm.