Arizona Education Association

Fall 2016

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FALL 2016 | ADVOCATE 29 National Perspective FALL 2016 | ADVOCATE 29 NEA RA 2016: Educators Stand Up for Unity, Social Justice By Tim Walker via NEA Today The 95th NEA Representative Assembly (RA) kicked off on the morning of July 4 with the typical energetic celebration, as the 7,000 delegates danced to sounds of Prince and Michael Jackson blasting through the Washington, D.C., Convention Center. But, as NEA President Lily Eskelsen García took the stage to deliver her keynote address, the mood quickly changed. "We will not begin without honoring those who lost their lives for no other reason than that they were gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender," Eskelsen García informed the delegates. "Today, we mourn with Orlando." Forty-nine educators then fi led to the front of the stage with the images of the 49 people who were killed in the Pulse nightclub shootings in Orlando on June 12. "There's a real world out there, and it's not a safe place. It's dangerous, and the work we'll do in this safe place is important, because it has the chance to change the world out there. That dangerous world needs us," Eskelsen García said. "We're living under a toxic, choking environment where entire groups of people are demonized, targeted and terrorized."

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