UFF Legislative Toolkit

Call, email and meet with your state representative and senator

It may seem antiquated, but your elected officials hearing from you makes a difference. Their staff has to document how many points of contact they receive for or against any piece of legislation that they will be voting on. So together, we can make a real difference here!

You are a constituent of these legislators, and they need to honor your request to hear your concerns and schedule a time to meet with you in person or virtually. (Read more about these bills below).

Enter your home address below and complete the form to request a meeting with your senator and representative about higher education:

Here are a few more ways to take action:

1. Testify in person or virtually!

If you are willing to to testify — in person, in Tallahassee or remotely —  or offer written testimony, please let UFF (uff@floridaea.org) know ASAP.

2. Write an OpEd for your local paper

FEA’s Write a Letter to the Editor tool has weblinks to many local papers — or you can contact your paper directly. Please share it widely so we can cross-promote your contribution! Make your personal story heard and felt as it relates to the proposed legislation and its impacts on your workplace.

3. Join the Working Families Lobby Corps

2022 Working Families Lobby Corps signup — Through the Florida AFL-CIO, members can sign up to help AFL-CIO, one of our affiliated unions, with its advocacy against union-busting and education-hobbling bills.

More info on the Working Families Lobby Corps can be found  on the Florida AFL-CIO website.

4. Host a Zoom phone party or video party to:

  • Make phone calls to legislative offices
  • Write postcards or short written letters to legislators
  • Tweetstorm your legislators
  • Write letters to your local paper

Learn more about the bills we’re most concerned about

SB 1458 / HB 1197 – “Employee Organizations” – This bill will remove the right to organize, form, and keep unions for many workers in Florida’s higher education system by requiring membership percentage minimums, removing payroll deductions for union dues, and allowing for unreasonable challenges to union membership lists. UFF stands opposed to this clear attempt to undermine the rights to collective action guaranteed in the Florida Constitution.

SB 520 / HB 703 – “Public Records and Public Meetings” – This bill will remove presidential job searches at Florida’s universities and colleges from Sunshine Law requirements, meaning full lists of candidates, identifications of conflicts of interest, and other safeguards of state dollars and resources will no longer be available to the public. Secrecy only benefits those with ulterior motives. UFF stands on the side of the faculty, staff, students, and public of Florida in supporting transparency in these key hiring processes.

HB 6007 – “Licenses to Carry Concealed Weapons or Firearms” – At UFF, we believe guns have no place on college and university campuses, unless in the hands of law enforcement professionals who are trained in de-escalation techniques. Florida has already seen enough gun violence. There is no need to add the potential for more destruction with this reckless and senseless bill.

The Week Ahead in the  Legislature

Agenda Watch:  In order for session to end on time, the budget will need to be finalized before the end of the night on Tuesday, March 8. We’ll be watching to see how the education budget turns out.

Special Session 

Since Gov. DeSantis vetoed the Congressional maps that were sent to him from the Legislature, a special session will be convened on April 19 for the purpose of creating a new map. The session will end no later than 11:59 p.m. on April 22.

The session will be limited exclusively the Congressional maps. There will not be any education policy during this special session. 

All meetings are streamed live and on The Florida Channel where they are also available for on-demand viewing within 24 hours of the conclusion of the meeting.

Op-ed: New bill threatens federal financial aid for Florida’s students

This column was originally published on Feb. 20, 2022, by the South Florida Sun Sentinel. By ANDREW GOTHARD, UFF President  The beatings will continue until morale improves. Such is the…

Read more about Op-ed: New bill threatens federal financial aid for Florida’s students

UFF leads fight for intellectual freedom

University of Florida students and faculty gather Nov. 12, 2021, to advocate for free speech and academic freedom. The United Faculty of Florida, FEA’s higher education affiliate, has stepped forward…

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Celebrating American Education Week

Neighborhood public schools are a vital part of our communities, and about 90 percent of Florida’s students are educated in public schools. Join us in celebrating public education and all…

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NEA report: Florida’s teachers still among nation’s worst paid

As inflation grows and despite investments by the Legislature, Florida’s teachers remain stuck near the bottom nationally when it comes to average pay, according to new figures released today by…

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For students to learn anything, Florida needs educators

As Gov. DeSantis today signs HB 7, a bill based on a manufactured political narrative, the Florida Education Association (FEA) must call out the fact that our students would be…

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New law promotes falsehoods about schools, will aggravate shortage of teachers and staff

By signing the “Don’t Say Gay” bill, Gov. DeSantis has put a political agenda ahead of what’s best for our students.

Read more about New law promotes falsehoods about schools, will aggravate shortage of teachers and staff