16 April 2016

Emailing My Students about the Strike, with Links (Updated 4/19)

NTFC Facebook post with strike announcement (they announced it other places, too--this was just the easiest version for me to find)
Old news, but back in September, NTFC President Shawn Gilmore explained "Why a Union?"

UPDATE 4/17:

I'm still looking for formulations of the anti-NTFC position and not finding any.  Feel free to comment or contact me via the blogger contact form in the sidebar if you know of anything I'm missing.

ORIGINAL POST: Here's the email I sent my students earlier today (4/16).
Hello all,
As I mentioned in class last week, it's looking like class will not be meeting this week, as I will be on strike, our planned speaker is also part of the striking union, and the English Building will probably be picketed. The union had been hoping that the threat of a strike would bring the administration to the bargaining table, but that doesn't seem to be happening (although it still might!).

Feel free to email me at [personal email address redacted] if you'd like to discuss the matter informally.  
You can read up on some of the issues involved in the following places, in no particular order:
The only formal statement that the university has issued since the strike vote was announced has been this letter from Interim Provost Ed Feser to the faculty members who make up the bargaining unit (cut and pasted here because I can't find anywhere it's been published).  If I can find any additional formulations of the univerity's position, I'll send a follow-up so you can get a fuller picture of the non-union view of the issues involved.
Dear Colleagues:

I am writing to you because you hold a position that is represented by the Non-Tenure Faculty Coalition Local #6546, IFT/AFT/AAUP. The NTFC bargaining team has said publicly that the membership authorized a strike last week and that it is considering a job action as early as the week of April 18. In light of these developments, I want to make sure that you have critical information regarding the current status of our negotiations for a first collective bargaining agreement. 
The campus has been engaged in ongoing contract negotiations with representatives from the NTFC since October 2014. The union recently requested bringing in a federal mediator. We’ve had just two mediation sessions so far and four additional mediation dates are scheduled (April 27, May 11, May 26 and June 11). We have reached tentative agreements on several key items and believe that further progress can be made at the bargaining table. We are disappointed that it appears the NTFC isn’t willing to give that process a chance. We have urged the NTFC representatives to continue mediation so that we may work together toward reaching a fair and equitable contract.
Since many of you have asked about rules regarding strikes, I want to clarify them here. While the University recognizes that, under certain circumstances, represented employees have the right to strike, it is equally important to note that individual employees also have the right to choose not to strike and to continue working. Employees who report to work during a strike will be paid by the University for their services, whereas employees who choose to strike will not be paid.
We value the contributions of specialized faculty members. We have taken major steps over the past few years to demonstrate our support, and we are committed to doing more to address your concerns and ensure that you can achieve your career goals.
We remain optimistic that if we work together we can find reach a fair and equitable contract.

Edward Feser

Interim Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and Provost
I HOPE I'll be seeing you on Tuesday, but if I don't, stay tuned for an announcement about your Week 6 assignment.  
Kirstin Wilcox

Update: shortly after this email went out, the student newspaper published a story on the Provost's letter.  Had it been available before I sent the letter, I would have included it.

No comments :

Post a Comment