Here’s another great example of how teacher’s unions are utterly dismantling the education system in the U.S…
In Buffalo, New York union members are provided with no-cost, no-deductible plastic surgery procedures originally designed to cover the costs of reconstructive surgery from serious accidents and burns. Despite its original intent, the benefit, known as a “cosmetic rider” is being widely used to cover 100% of the costs of non-essential procedures including:
- Tummy tucks
- Botox injections
- Breast enhancements
- Other non-essential plastic surgery
This costs taxpayers of that state between $5.9 and $9 million annually.
A single doctor alone billed the district $4 million last year.
If that wasn’t bad enough, this indignity is occurring among a tough economic climate that has resulted in over 7000 teacher layoffs and a projected $42 million budget deficit. The President of the union claims that he would be willing to get rid of the benefit if the school district would simply “come to the negotiating table.”
However, I find his claim to be highly dubious at best.
That’s because the cosmetic rider is only the beginning of this really “sweet deal”. The benefit is part of a union contract that expired back in 2004. However, due to a 1982 state law known as the Triborough Amendment to the Taylor Law, when a public employee’s contract expires, they are allowed to continue working under its terms of the old contract until a new contract is in place while keeping all their benefits under the old contract – including annual 2.5% pay increases. Suffice it to say that under these conditions, the union has exactly ZERO motivation to renew their expired contract.
With all these great benefits, one who think that the union teachers in Buffalo must be doing a wonderful job.
In fact, the high school graduation rate in Buffalo actually declined last year with only a dismal 47.4% high school graduation rate. Can anyone be honestly surprised by the fact that according to the 2009 Program for International Student Assessment, 15-year-olds in the U.S. ranked merely 25th among peers from 34 countries on math and only managed an average score in science and reading? How pathetic! Not surprisingly, China ranked #1 across the board so if you are not into Moo shu pork and you don’t speak Cantonese, I suggest you start learning.
You can watch a video this story here.