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UC-AFT Insider February 2015

University Council-AFT Insider
February 6, 2015

In this issue: 

  • Fight the Right With Union Might—UC-AFT Local 2226 at UCI Shows Us How It’s Done!
  • February 25th Adjunct Day of Action—Sounds Fun, but Are Lecturers Adjuncts?
  • CSU Gives Lecturers and Librarians Full Access to Shared Governance
  • UC-AFT Member Spotlight: Ruth Charloff: UCR Music Lecturer and Orchestra Director

Fight the Right with Union Might—UC-AFT Local 2226 at UCI Shows Us How It’s Done!
With the worst income inequality since the 1920’s as a backdrop, the union busters are doubling down on their efforts to undermine public sector unions.  A former Reagan administration attorney is bankrolling a case all the way to the Supreme Court with the hope of a ruling banning fairshare fees.  If the Court decides that fairshare is an unconstitutional abridgment of free speech, the last bastion of unionized workers in this country (that’s us, folks) will be served a devastating blow.  In a recent Los Angeles Times article covering the case, Friedrichs v California Teacher’s Association, UCI Law Professor, Catherine Fisk, said that unions need to convince their bargaining unit members that paying dues is worth it.  Professor Fisk is correct…and that’s just what UC-AFT is doing at UCI and other UC campuses.  During Fall Quarter 2014, 82 lecturers and librarians at UCI recognized the value of union membership and chose to join UC-AFT

February 25th Adjunct Day of Action—Sounds Fun, but Are Lecturers Adjuncts?
Apparently, all it takes these days is an offhand suggestion on a Facebook post to rile up the marginalized adjunct and contingent (adcon) faculty and spark a nationwide day of action.  On February 25, adcon faculty across the country will participate in a variety of actions, including walking off the job in some places.  UC-AFT members can’t walk out, but we can wear buttons or arm bands, hold teach-ins, and otherwise make it known that Lecturers are contingent, precarious, adjunct, non-senate, visiting, temporary, part-time, and by-appointment faculty. UC uses the title Adjunct Professor for a split research and teaching appointment, but make no mistake, the sisters and brothers marching on February 25 are our people.  Check out this article to find out why UC-AFT is actually a leader in the adcon movement, then check in with your local UC-AFT contacts to help organize a Feb 25 event on your campus.

CSU Gives Lecturers, Librarians and Other Staff Full Access to Shared Governance
The CSU Statewide Senate voted last week to grant lecturers, librarians, coaches and counselors full access to campus and department shared governance. The published rationale for the decision includes this lovely snippet of enlightenment, “These resolutions, taken in the ensemble, point toward the recognition of the value of all faculty unit employees including non-tenure track lecturers, coaches, counselors, and librarians in the life of the institution, and lead toward a recommendation for the inclusion of these categories under the campus definition of ‘faculty members’.”  In other news, the Sacramento Bee reports that for the first time the CSU system now employs more part-time lecturers than full-time professors.  Is it possible that this new embrace of our contingent colleagues in the CSU is more necessity than democratic ideal?  Possibly, but it’s a great precedent for our own You See (UC) Democracy? campaign.

UC-AFT Member Spotlight— Ruth Charloff: UCR Music Lecturer and Orchestra Director
Ruth Charloff is a Lecturer in the Department of Music at UCR, where she conducts the UCR Orchestra, Chamber Orchestra, and UCR Chamber Singers. She teaches instrumental and choral conducting, instrumentation, 20th-century music history, and Introduction to Western Music.  Dr. Charloff will be conducting a UCR Orchestra performance entitled Heroes and Anti-Heros on February 7-8 in the UCR University Theater.  For more about Ruth, her work with the Claremont Symphony Orchestra, and why she values UC-AFT, please read our Member Spotlight interview.

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The University Council – American Federation of Teachers is an affiliate of the California Federation of Teachers, the American Federation of Teachers and the AFL-CIO.