Vitally Important Information for Members

INFORMATIONAL MEETING TO DISCUSS THE MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING MAY 15, 12:30-2, 110 ENGINEERING

 

BALLOTS DUE BY FRIDAY MAY 23 by 12 NOON

 

A package containing a cover letter with ballot and balloting instructions, a contact information letter, a copy of the Memorandum of Understanding, a mailing envelope, and a blind envelope was sent last week to all UFCT 1460 members.

 

If you are a member of the Union and have NOT received this package by May 12, please contact Kye Carbone at the Union office as soon as possible (kyecarbone2@aol.com; 718-636-3614).

 

Your UFCT Negotiation Committee strongly endorses this agreement and recommends that you vote in favor of its ratification.  This is a strong Contract with many positive improvements for the ENTIRE Bargaining Unit, namely:

 

1.  Significant increases in all salary minimums and minimum rates

2.  Medical benefits with a 50% institute contribution for a segment of the adjunct faculty heretofore been uninsured (by no later than 1/01/2011), following a restructuring of the part-time faculty.

3.  An increased number of sabbatical leaves for adjuncts.

4.  A monthly professional day for librarians.

5.  A streamlined reappointment process for the full-time tenure track faculty.

6.  An agency fee for the UFCT which effectively compels every bargaining unit member to pay their fair share of dues to the Union for the benefit and protection of the Collective Bargaining Agreement.

 

These accomplishments, particularly salary increases (including higher minima AND 3% annual increases for all faculty) and gaining benefits for a previously uninsured group, are significant given the current stormy economic climate and health care crisis. 

Moreover, the Union held the line on its past accomplishments and on the issues most important to the Unit: ARPT (faculty input on issues of appointment, reappointment, promotion, and tenure); Tenure (including CCE); and yes, Academic Freedom despite the Pratt Administration’s demand for a full rewrite of the article. 

The Academic Freedom article in the Memorandum of Understanding (article 3) is modeled upon that of the American Association of University Professors (see the link http://www.aaup.org/AAUP/protect/academicfreedom/), with the notable addition of “creativity” and “constructive dissent” to article 3.1.  We hope it gives our members confidence that, as the AAUP’s website puts it, “protecting academic freedom is the AAUP’s core mission,” and was the reason the organization was formed in 1915.  The new language of Article 3 brings Pratt into alignment with nationally-accepted standards of academic freedom.  It also preserves the faculty member’s fundamental right to choose what material to present in the classroom in relation to the subject he or she is teaching. 

Finally, the AFT, in its statement on Academic Freedom, observes that “…the greatest threat to academic freedom today is the subtle removal of many faculty positions from the tenure track and from shared governance structures.”  The Union, in its firm refusal to allow tenure or CCE to be weakened, thus works to preserve faculty academic freedom in this way as well.  Only 2 schools in the nation have CCE: Pratt is one of them and we are going to keep it that way.

Sincerely,

The UFCT 1460 Executive Officers and Negotiating Team