More than 1,800 University of Oregon (UO) faculty members now have a voice at work after they chose to join United Academics, an affiliate of AFT Oregon and the American Association of University Professors (AAUP). The Oregon Employment Relations Board Friday certified the professors’ choice after the university dropped its objections.
The new union includes tenure- and non-tenure-track faculty, adjunct instructors, research associates and assistants and post-doctoral scholars. Scott Pratt, professor of philosophy, says the composition of the bargaining unit
paves the way for UO tenure-related and non-tenure-track faculty—working together—to have a more substantive voice in refocusing our university on the core mission of teaching and research.
In March, a majority of faculty members signed union authorization cards and the university initially filed objections. But after several meetings with the professors, the administration dropped those objections. Says English instructor Tina Boscha:
We now have the official means to negotiate and collectively bargain for better working conditions, transparency and accountability. This will improve the learning conditions of our students.
Meanwhile, Oregon State University (OSU) graduate employees are working hard to form a union. A strong majority of workers already have signed cards asking to join AFT Oregon Local 6069—the Coalition of Graduate Employees.
But OSU President Edward Ray will not agree to recognize the strong desire of nearly 800 graduate workers who have voted to form a union. Click here to sign a petition and help these workers join Oregon’s union movement.