We had a union meeting…

We had a union meeting today. Unfortunately, it looks like we'll be striking, starting Wednesday, April 23rd. This is rather horrible, but I honestly can't see what other options are left to us at this point.

Kevin sent a letter to the faculty discussion list that I thought did a good job summarizing where we stand:

"We are still fairly far apart on a number of important issues, and the administration's latest "offer" includes a number of poisonous anti-union clauses that we cannot possibly accept.

Because they chose to present this as their "last and best" we legally either have to accept it, allow it to be unilaterally imposed on us, or strike immediately. Thus the administration has chosen to take continued discussion and bargaining off the table.

The other option to move forward is binding arbitration, as the EO called for. The union is willing to go this route, but the administration has refused.

Various other "strike-like" tactics we had considered like a "grade strike" or striking but making accommodations for graduating seniors are legally "partial strikes" and hence not protected by labor laws (so anyone could be fired or otherwise punished for participating).

Thus it isn't clear to me what alternative to a strike there is to suggest, unless it is to essentially give up and disband the union. There are a number of ways this could go forward without putting the semester at risk, but the administration has carefully taken all of those off the table. President Easter more or less says as much in his letter rejecting the EO's call for binding arbitration."

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