Saturday, March 23, 2013

The Governor's (third) Visit

Wednesday morning I was reading the paper and I saw that Governor Malloy was coming to Norwich on Thursday for a town hall meeting.  I give the man credit, he travels around the state holding town hall meetings and basically gets beat up by the electorate, because, well, people complain.
So I thought, if the Governor is coming to Norwich, we should invite him to stop by our union hall.
The Governor has been our friend.  He met with us very early in our organizing campaign, two years ago, after another Norwich town hall meeting.  He told us he supported the rights of workers to organize and that his mom and aunt were nurses.  He came again one year ago to our rally on the street near the hospital when we were struggling to get our first contract.  He stood with us, telling the hospital, "get a contract, get it done."
There are many people who we need to thank for helping us get where we are.  But the Governor did what a leader does,
he led. 
He was out in front.
So, on Wednesday morning, I emailed Terri Merisotis, our Membership Mobilization Coordinator, at AFT-CT, and asked her to pass on our invitation, you know, just to be polite.
Latter that morning she called.  The Governor wanted to know who would be there because he was considering coming.  I said, the Governor can have whomever he wants there, he's THE GOVERNOR.  If he wants a crowd, I'll get a crowd.  If he wants to relax and regroup, he has a place to stop.
Latter that day, Terri called and said his schedule wouldn't allow the time to stop.  OK, I thought, at least we offered.
Thursday morning I received a call again from an excited Terri.  The Governor's schedule had cleared and he wanted to come for a visit.
We spent about 45 minutes with the Governor. We had refreshments and talked.  He wanted an update on our Local and how our relationship was progressing with the hospital. We discussed changes in health care, Obama Care, the state budget. 
At one point he asked us, as health care professionals, if he could partake in one piece of cheese.
(I hope I don't get him in trouble with Mrs Governor or his doctor)
His aide let him know when it was time to head to Norwich City Hall, we snapped a picture, and reminded him that whenever he is in Norwich, we are his home.