President’s Message – October 2017

Jack Freck

October 18, 2017

A Message from the President


On Election Day November 7, 2017 there will be a simple question with significant consequences that will appear on the New York State ballot. “Shall there be a convention to revise the constitution and amend the same?”

What exactly is a Constitutional Convention?

Every 20 years, by law, New Yorkers are given the opportunity to hold a Constitutional Convention, or “ConCon”. Its purpose is to revise or rewrite the state constitution. It’s a measure that was written into the document when it was first drafted back in the late 1700’s. However, in this day and age, special interests are so deeply entrenched in the political process, that holding a convention could prove to be very dangerous for you and your family. In addition, this convention will prove to be tremendously costly. Current estimates put holding a convention at over $300 million, and guess who will be expected to pay that bill…YOU!

If voters authorize a New York State Constitutional Convention this election day, our hard-won pension protections could be stripped away. A Constitutional Convention could undermine the retirement security of public employees. The state constitution currently protects public employee pensions from being diminished or impaired. These protections could be eliminated if a convention opens- up the constitution for revision. The constitution also establishes various worker rights including the right to be a member of a union and bargain collectively, and the right to Workers’ Compensation. While advocates believe a ConCon would give citizens a chance to “take back their government,” in reality nothing could be further from the truth. A ConCon would change the face of New York and bring detrimental changes to rights and benefits that workers are now guaranteed such as pensions and in the long run will only hurt unions and the hard working men and women who keep our government running. If the ConCon passes, the entire document would be up for review. Delegates would be free to rewrite, delete or add anything. While Albany’s ethnical mess does need to be cleaned up, it will not be done via A ConCon. The wealthy will continue to be wealthy and the working class will suffer.

Through a Constitutional Convention, we could lose everything we have worked so hard to achieve. You have the power to stop this fiasco before it even starts by heading to the polls on Election Day, November 7th, to VOTE NO TO A CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION.