Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Rally to Support Part-Time Faculty at Wayne State - Nov. 15

Union of Part-Time Faculty at
Wayne State University launches first contract campaign

Informational Demonstration Nov. 15

Media contacts:
Amanda Hiber: 313-720-2861
Rayfield Waller: 313-212-8321
Bryan G. Pfeifer: 313-832-7902

DETROIT -- The Union of Part-Time Faculty-American Federation of
Teachers at Wayne State University (WSU) will hold an informational
demonstration Nov. 15 at Noon at Gullen Mall at WSU. The UPTF begins
formally negotiating its first union contract with the university
administration Nov. 16.

"This demonstration will show the broad support for our union on
campus and in the larger community. Part-time faculty are absolutely
crucial to this university's operation, like all campus workers. It's
time the administration compensated us for the indispensable work we
do," said Amanda Hiber, UPTF member.

There are about 900 part-time faculty teaching in all of the
departments and colleges at the WSU main campus and at the extensions
of the university. Some professors have taught every term for 35
years, some are teaching their first semester. Some have full-time
jobs elsewhere and teach only one course; others are trying to patch
together a living teaching at WSU and at two or three other colleges.
The part-time faculty overwhelmingly voted for union representation
based around the issues of salary increases, benefits, job security
and other concerns.

"We do what we do because we care about the community; like nurses,
everybody needs us. But we are not getting enough compensation, we
don't receive health benefits and professional respect is minimal
although we are the ones closer and more accessible to students and
the larger campus community. We know that the power of a union is the
only way to win and deepen real democracy in our workplaces and larger
society," said Rayfield Waller, UPTF member

The UPTF is part of a nationwide movement to unionize part-time
faculty, who make up an increasingly greater fraction of college
faculty. Much like the corporate trend toward a part-time workforce,
universities are relying more on part-time instructors, who generally
receive a fraction of the pay of full-time faculty, and no benefits.
Non-tenure track faculty at the University of Michigan have been
represented by Lecturers Employee Organization (LEO) since 2002-2003,
and part-time faculty organizing campaigns are currently underway at
both Henry Ford Community College and Michigan State University.


WSU Union of Part-Time Faculty / AFT, AFL-CIO
51 W Hancock
Detroit, MI 48201
313-832-7902 / uptf@aftmichigan.org

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