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NEA members help brothers and sisters affected by Hurricanes Irma and Harvey

NEA and AFT join forces to help those displaced by Irma

WASHINGTON - September 11, 2017 -

Members of the National Education Association are coming together to help educators and their families affected by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. NEA and the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) jointly represent educators in Florida and they have combined fundraising efforts to assist members affected by Hurricane Irma there. To donate, please visit the AFT Foundation’s Disaster Relief Center.

“Our hearts, thoughts, and prayers remain with the people of the Gulf Coast and Florida in the wake of second devastating hurricane to hit the United States in two weeks,” said NEA President Lily Eskelsen García. “The recovery will not happen overnight but the more than 3 million members of the National Education Association family stand ready to help our sisters and brothers as they work to rebuild their families, homes, schools and communities.”

NEA has also contributed to Education International (EI) out of concern for students, public schools, and educators throughout the Caribbean region, which is one of the worst hit areas by Hurricane Irma. EI is working with the Caribbean Union of Teachers to help members in need. According to early reports, Hurricane Irma destroyed up to 95 percent of the infrastructure in Barbuda, and the French side of St. Maarten seems to have suffered a similar fate. It also claimed the lives of at least 22 people, and the number is expected to rise as communications come back online.

Donations to the NEA Foundation’s Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund and the AFT-NEA Irma Disaster Relief Fund will go a long way to replace belongings and meet the many expenses educators and their families will certainly incur in the days, weeks, and months to come.

“All of us can play a role in rebuilding the lives of those impacted by these natural disasters, standing strong for our members and their families, and mending communities,” said Eskelsen García. “On behalf of affected NEA members, thank you for your prayers and generosity. We will help our sisters and brothers find their way to brighter days and be their anchor through these difficult times.”

Educators know that when disasters such as Hurricanes Irma and Harvey strike, children are often traumatized and they need help from families and educators to cope and heal. NEA is providing resources and information to help deal with students’ fears and questions. Visit for more information.

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The National Education Association is the nation’s largest professional employee organization, representing more than 3 million elementary and secondary teachers, higher education faculty, education support professionals, school administrators, retired educators and students preparing to become teachers. Learn more at

CONTACT: Miguel A. Gonzalez  202-822-7823,