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For Immediate Release

Friday, July 19, 2013

Court Rules in Favor of AFSCME Members, Detroit Bankruptcy Illegal

Statement by AFSCME Pres. Lee Saunders: Snyder and Orr are not above the law and cannot ignore the Michigan constitution

Governor Snyder and Kevin Orr are not above the law and cannot ignore the Michigan constitution. AFSCME members challenged Snyder in court over the unlawful bankruptcy authorization that cleared the way for Detroit Emergency Manager Kevin Orr to attack public worker pensions.

Today, the judge ruled against Snyder and Orr and accused them of using bankruptcy as a backdoor around the state constitutional protection of pension benefits.

We urge Snyder and Orr to immediately abandon their course of action and to follow the judge’s order directing “the Emergency Manager to immediately withdraw the Chapter 9 petition” and to “not authorize any further Chapter 9 filing that threatens to diminish or impair accrued pension benefits.”

There is too much at stake to play political games with the hard earned retirement security of Detroit’s public workers. These retirees worked hard and played by the rules. The average general city employee pension is less than $18,000 per year, attacking these pensions is not only unfair, it is illegal.

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