Catholic school teachers vote to strike

Hundreds of teachers at Catholic schools throughout Westchester and Hudson Valley voted Tuesday to strike during the pope's upcoming visit. Teachers have been working without a contract since schools opened in the fall. They say they are disappointed with the salaries and health insurance contributions outlined in a contract that was previously offered.

Lay Faculty Association President Henry Kielkucki says his members had no choice but to vote to strike. That means about 400 Catholic high school teachers will walk the picket lines when Pope Benedict XVI visits New York.

Ten Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of New York are affected by a strike, including Archbishop Stepinac in White Plains, Maria Regina in Hartsdale, John F. Kennedy Catholic in Somers and John S. Burke in Goshen. In January, teachers held a one-day sickout, but that didn't lead to a new deal. Union members say they had no choice but to increase pressure to lead to a better contract.

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