June 18, 2018

Bruce Rauner hurt Western Illinois University

Bruce Rauner visited a campus of Western Illinois University—where hundreds of AFSCME Local 417 members work—on June 14. He failed to mention the damage he did to the WIU over the last three years.

First Rauner cut $16 million from WIU’s budget in his 2015 budget proposal. Then he inflicted his ideological agenda on the state’s budget, hurting the most vulnerable and causing irreparable harm to our state’s public university system.

Because of Rauner’s budget crisis, WIU was forced to lay off more than 100 employees in 2016 as it grappled with a drastic decrease in state support and uncertain funding for the coming years.

As a result, the school saw freshmen enrollment plunge by 21 percent from fall 2016 to fall 2017.

“Western Illinois University was devastated by Bruce Rauner’s budget crisis, and it will take years to repair the damage he's done,” said Jordan Abudayyeh, a spokesperson from AFSCME-backed gubernatorial candidate J.B. Pritzker’s campaign.

“With students fleeing, employees getting laid off, and programs being cut, this failed governor leveraged our future and made WIU students and teachers pay the price.”

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