Bulletin Board

This page provides additional information or elaborations of matters that may or may not have been presented at Monthly Members Meetings. It is updated near the beginning of each month, after each Members Meeting, and otherwise as new information becomes available.

Items from the January Members Meeting:

• Guest speakers Cathleen Jensen  and Bill Bianchi (see picture) from the Illinois Single Payer Coalition spoke about the movement for Universal Single Payer Health Care.

• Slides from their talk
• Handouts from their talk

• Information from Diane Stokes, President, AFSCME Retiree Subchapter 161:

• Reported on candidates recommended by AFSCME at recent Region 1 People’s meeting.

• Members express solidarity with Starbuck’s workers in Evanston

• Members were invited to join other Union supporters on picket lines at the University of Illinois Thursday and Friday, at the quad for picketing 10-12, Rally at Noon and picketing 1-3pm. (see: https://blockclubchicago.org/2023/01/17/uic-professors-go-on-strike-demanding-higher-pay-and-more-job-security/)


Items from the November Members Meeting:

• Information from our principal speaker, Karen Retzer, Midwest Campaign Organizer for Compassion and Choices

Ms. Retzer’s talk was entitled: Advance Care Planning: A Gift for You and Your Loved Ones

The Zoom recording of Karen Retzer’s talk may be viewed by clicking here.

• The My End-of-Life Decisions: An Advance Planning Guide and Toolkit is a booklet in which you will find most of the materials that I discussed. You can either download a copy of the booklet or order a free copy to be sent to you.  

Advance Directives for Illinois can be found by going to this page and scrolling down and putting “Illinois” into the drop down menu. This will take  you to the Advance Directives page of the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH)  website. At the bottom of the IDPH page, one can find links to a variety of advance directive forms, including the Living Will Declaration Form, the Power of Attorney for Health Care, and the Practitioner Order for Life-Sustaining Treatment (POLST) form.

• The Diagnosis Decoder can be used to help people generate specific questions for their healthcare provider. And the  Dementia Decoder can be used to general questions for the doctor regarding a dementia diagnosis.

• Also, please feel free to give my email to the group!


• Information from Diane Stokes, President, AFSCME Retiree Subchapter 161:

• I emailed reservations for 6 people to attend The Illinois Labor History Society dinner on Friday, December 2, If you are interested in attending, leave a message at our voicemail number 224-366-733339

• Several of you who live in Evanston met Andrew Carson, the musician who preformed are the Alliance Dinner and will be playing at our AFSCME holiday dinner at Sweet Basil Cafe on the 3rd Wednesday of December.

Additional Event: If you are interested Antonia Ruppert will be showing her paintings and  Andrew will be also playing music  at a Social Justice event at the Vineyard Church in Evanston, Friday December 2, 7-9 pm at 2495 West Howard Street, Evanston, IL.



Posted after Members Meeting:

• Items of interest from Diane Stokes, 24-Nov-22:




Bulletin Board entries from the October meeting and after:


• Information from our principal speaker:

Sergio Mojarro
Senior Health Insurance Program (SHIP)
Illinois Department on Aging
555 W Monroe St, 15th Floor, Chicago, IL 60661 312-814-4052

Mr. Mojarro’s talk was entitled: Medicare Basics & State of Illinois Retirees

  1. His slides can be viewed by clicking here.
  2. A lightly edited recording of his Zoom presentation can be viewed by clicking here. 

• Announcements from Diane Stokes, President, AFSCME Retiree Subchapter 161:

  1. There has been some confusion created for retirees because Medicare is having its open enrollment period at around the same time as the TRAIL program. Retirees who receive their health insurance through the state’s TRAIL plan should ONLY PAY ATTENTION to Medicare Advantage mailings that include the TRAIL Logo (Illinois),

    Medicare is having its open enrichment period around the same time as the TRAIL program is having open enrollment.

  2. Two of the most consequential Labor icons of the 20th century meet in a Chicago speakeasy. One is under surveillance by the federal government for being an alleged anarchist, and the other is known as “The most dangerous woman in America.” That’s the premise forA Table For Two at The Dill Pickle, the new play by Irish writer and musician Larry Kirwan, which is having its world premier on November 13, 2022, 3 PM at Chicago’s Irish American Heritage Center. Click here for more details (links in the handbill won’t work)


• Announcements from Dave Rolston, Vice-President, AFSCME Retiree Subchapter 161:
  1. You could enjoy a fine free dinner with us. There is still one (member free) dinner reservation available at the table our Sub-Chapter reserved at The Alliance For Community Services fund raising dinner on Tuesday, Nov. 15th at Grace Place, 637 S. Dearborn, Chicago.  We committed to $600, which includes dinner for 8 & a 1page ad in the dinner booklet.
  2. Join members & raise a few at the Celtic Knot Pub, 626 Church, Evanston, this Sunday, Oct. 23 at 5pm to 8pm to remember brother Dave Seiberling. 
  3. Peter joins Ida & Pat as winners of a free lunch from the lunch lottery draw. 
  4. Everyone who attends our Christmas Party on December 21st will receive a free gift of author Toni Gilpin’s book on labor history, “The Long Deep Grudge”. We committed to purchasing 40 books by Toni  & she donated 10 more to  us. We will play a Christmas Trivia game at the Party. We also intend to present every new Sub-Chapter 161 member with a copy.
  5. Remember to vote and to encourage others to support union friendly candidates. The complete list of AFSCME recommended candidates can be found at https://m.afscme31.org/news/vote

• Announcements from Fran Tobin, Alliance for Retired Americans

        1. Negotiations are on-going, but CCCTU-1600 members at Chicago City Colleges voted to authorize a strike if the (hand-picked, unelected) Board of Trustees and Chancellor don’t agree to a fair contract that respects workers and strengthens services for students.
          Sign up here for info about joining a picket line.
          Nobody wants to strike, but if it comes to that, let’s be ready!

          Addenda supplied by Diane Stokes (10/26/22):

          [The Union has]. . . also started a GoFundMe Strike Fund. All money donated to the strike fund will go towards assisting members facing hardship during the strike. Please share the fund and donate if you’re able to.

          [The Union will]. . . continue to fight for:

          Reduced class size to provide more individual support to students.

          Providing more academic support in our laboratory classes so that professors can give students more attention and keep the environment safer for all.

          Making remote education and support services more accessible for our students.

          Giving access to affordable health insurance for our part-time professionals.

          Expanding the current Sustainable Community School Chicago Public Schools model to include every City College of Chicago, providing much needed support services for students and the community to attend and be successful (City Colleges for the Common Good).

          Bringing back needed  health programs to Olive-Harvey, Kennedy-King, Daley and Truman College

          Providing adequate compensation given the rising inflation rate.

          Addenda supplied by Diane Stokes (10/26/22):

          Subject: City Colleges of Chicago faculty, staff authorize right to strike


          Join members of Chicago City Colleges Teachers Union Local 1600 on Informational picket lines Wednesday, October 26 at Noon at any City College

          Thursday , October 27, at 6pm, Local 1600 will hold a Strike Rally at the CTU Building, 1901 West Carroll Avenue. Supporters, family and children are welcome.


  1. When people with disabilities (PWDs) at Bria nursing home launched a petition for redress of grievances, management retaliated.  Private, for-profit facility owners often maximize profit by neglecting residents and exploiting workers.
    Get more info and sign the petition here
  2. Tuesday, November 15
    5:30-8:00 PM
    Grace Place, 637 S. Dearborn

    Worker-consumer alliances don’t just build themselves. This year we are honoring:

    Tony Johnston, Cook County College Teachers Union
    Arturo Carrillo, CCW & Treatment Not Trauma campaign






September Bulletin Board entries:

• Announcements from Vice-President Dave Rolston:

A.  Today’s regular meeting of Sub-chapter 161 defined two action areas.
1.    Illinois is divided into 5 Supreme Court Voting Districts. We will support the election of (2) Supreme Court nominees Mary K. O’Brien in the 3rd Supreme Court District & Elizabeth Rochford in the 2nd Supreme Court District. We’ll do this by phone banking & continuing to send post cards to union members in these districts, and we ask you to join the effort. Contact:  http://afscmeretirees161@gmail.com.
     These justices support keeping our pension protections in the Illinois State Constitution.That’s the main reason we defeated various right wing attempts to cut either our pensions or our benefits or both!
     The 3rd District is west & south, including DuPage, Will, Kankakee,  Grundy, LaSalle, Iroquois & Bureau Counties. The 2nd District is further west & north, including Kane, Kendall, Dekalb, McHenry & Lake Counties.
    We also support the “retention’ vote for Mary Jane Theis in the 1st Supreme Court District, which is Chicago &  Cook County. Justice Theis has served 10 years, thus requiring a ‘retention ‘vote. She also supports pension protections in the State Constitution.  
2. Council 31 also supports passing the Workers’ Rights Amendment to the State Constitution. This firmly protects current & future union members from threats, intimidation or unfair treatment when they opt to unionize. We will phone bank & also go door to door to promote its passage. 
B. Announcement:   Remembering Dave Seiberling.
Shannon Seiberling told us Dave passed on Sept. 10th. Dave asked that we celebrate him by hoisting a few drinks in his memory at The Celtic Knot Pub.,626 Church St, Evanston. Date- Sunday, Oct 23, 5pm to 8pm. 

• Materials from Alliance for Retired Americans

Money-Saving Programs

Pro Act

Workers’ Rights Amendment

Social Security and Medicare

Protecting the Right to Vote

Oppose the TRUST Act

Inflation Reduction Act and Presciption Drug Prices

Expanding Social Security


Social Security 2100: A Sacred Trust Act



July Bulletin Board entries:

• Register now for the Alliance’s 2022 National Membership Meeting

Members of the Alliance for Retired Americans will hold their quadrennial National Meeting virtually on July 27-28 from 1 to 5 PM Eastern Time. National leaders in the fight to strengthen and expand retirement security will address the meeting, and officers will be elected.

 The National Meeting will also consider new Alliance resolutions which guide the Alliance’s policy positions, and there will be interactive workshops to help prepare for the critical 2022 midterm elections.

Please click here to register for the Zoom meeting 2022 National Meeting of the Alliance for Retired Americans, July 27-28, 12-4 Central time. The registration deadline is July 15, 2022. 

Louis Goseland (he//him)

Executive Director

Illinois Alliance for Retired Americans
2229 S Halsted St. | Chicago, IL 60608



June Bulletin Board entries:

. May Bulletin Board entries:

 • Announcement from Council 31:

     Let’s vote together!

• Announcement from Diane Stokes and John Metz:
___For latest information on Covid 19 pandemic including how to get free tests, go to Covid.gov

• Announcement from Vice-President Dave Rolston (5/12):
     “Progressive Candidates in New US Ill.3rd Congressional Democratic Primary”

• Announcement from Vice-President Dave Rolston (5/18):
     Report on People’s Conference

• Report by Mike McHugh, AFSCME Local 3506:
     People Conference report
__Flyer supporting Workers Rights Amendment



April Bulletin Board entries:

• From Louis Goseland, Illinois Alliance for Retired Americans:

Older Americans Month Virtual Town Halls
• Congresswoman Lauren Underwood: May 3rd, 9:30 AM
• Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky: May 9th, 11:00 AM
Click here to register for the IARA Older American’s Month Virtual Town Halls!

• From the Illinois Labor History Society:

Multiple Labor History events April 28 through May, 21, 2022. See the events page for details! April 28 in Marseilles; April 30 in Bloomington; May 1 in Chicago Haymarket Square and in Mt. Olive, Illinois; Mother Jones birthday party, Chicago May 1; May 14-15 Pullman Railroad days; May 16, author visit, Roosevelt U.; and, May 21, Republic Steel commemoration.
Click here to go to the website.


Endnotes from Members Meeting of April 20, 2022

• Fran Tobin, Alliance for CommunityServices

2-Day Organizing Training, May 18-19, 2pm – 6pm (on zoom)

Click here for further information and registration.

• President Diane Stokes reported on People meeting

Key AFSCME Roll Calls (2021-22)



Meeting of March 16, 2022

• Fran Tobin, Alliance for CommunityServices

Town Hall on the call for an elected Board of Trustees at Chicago City Colleges
March 26, 4pm Click on this link to register


• Samantha McClain, from the Workers’ Rights Campaign
Click here to view a presentation on the Workers’ Rights Amendment.
Click here for information on mobilizing to get the Workers’ Rights referendum on the ballot.


• Dave Rolston, Subchapter 161 Vice-president

Invited members to join a “Welcoming & Entertainment Club” within Subchapter161.

“Join The Welcoming & Entertainment Club in Sub-Chapter 161. Meet new retiree members & have fun singing & doing skits. Contact Dave Rolston at free2yodle@gmail.com or (218) 355-8416″.


Past and/or ongoing causes:

• Supporting the call for an elected board of trustees at Chicago City Colleges (CCC);

• Supporting The Alliance for Community Services in their campaign to “Say No to Privatize Medicare”; Click here for further information.

• Supporting the Illinois Family Caregiver Act;

We encourage all 161 Sub-Chapter members to act with enlightened self-interest by calling their state rep & state senator,  asking them to support
House bIll HB 1766 & Senate bill SB 293 which fund HOME HEALTH CARE WORKERS: Request Rep/Senator support for the full $6 Million appropriation.
Click here to view a one page summary of the family caregiver act

• Encouraging our members to call the AFSCME hotline at 877-890-2056 to tell their lawmakers to support Governor Pritzker’s plan to protect our pensions;



From Members Meeting, February 16, 2022

Information from Louis Goseland:

ARA ZOOM TRAININGThe Alliance will be hosting a Zoom training Thursday, February 24th at 3CST that will cover the basics, best practices, and tips and tricks for using Zoom. This training is open to all, so please share the invite email going out next week with your members and anyone who is interested. Click here to register in advance for this meeting

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

PRITZKER’S BUDGET & PENSIONS Chicago Sun Times Article on Pritker’s budget and pension proposal 


Click here to view the ARA’s position on a piece of legislation introduced in 2021 to repeal WEP/GPO. Linked here is the latest effort to raise the income cap eligible for Social Security tax. 


Click here to view a one page summary of the family caregiver act that I mentioned. 


Click here to view a presentation on the Workers’ Rights Amendment. Please contact me if you would be interested in arranging for a presentation to educate and mobilize your members on this. 

PRIORITY IL STATE SUPREME COURT RACES: IL Supreme 2: Dekalb, Kane, McHenry, Lake, Kendall

IL Supreme 3: Dupage, Will, LaSalle, Bureau, Grundy, Iroquois, Kankakee

Please contact me if you would like me to arrange a presentation on what is at stake in these two races and what people can do to get involved. 

Information from Diane Stokes:

Click here to view the Video by former Labor Secretary Robert Reich on efforts to unionize Starbuck’s.


Click here to go to our home page.