Two of MALC’s key policy areas are fair trade and the treatment of our community’s labor force. Adjunct professors are part of our community’s labor force and in most cases are not fairly treated. MALC is in full support of the unionization of the adjunct workforce.
Below is a roundup of recent important Massachusetts adjunct news.
Adjuncts file complaint and plan action on January 19 against Northeastern due to unfair treatment.
‘The bargaining unit, a local of the Service Employees International Union, says on its website that the university unilaterally made the health-insurance changes with no warning on December 23, and that new eligibility restrictions “bar all but about 40 of 900 adjunct faculty from enrolling.” The 40 or so who are eligible, the site says, “are expected to pay 50 percent of health-care premiums out-of-pocket — more than double what other Northeastern employees pay for the same coverage.’
“According to the union, all but about 40 of its members are barred from enrolling in Northeastern’s new health plan, and eligible instructors are expected to pay 50 percent of their premiums out of pocket, which is more than double what other employees pay.”
‘The union said in its statement that the 15-month impasse in contract negotiations is the result of the administration’s “bad-faith approach to contract negotiations, refusing to discuss poverty-level wages or other economic disparities.” ‘
“Adjunct professors do not have long-term contracts with the school and are hired on a per-class basis, often on short notice. Many are paid just a few thousand dollars per class.”
The Northeastern Adjunct Faculty Union website:
December 21, 2015
Brandeis University Adjuncts Form Union
‘Non-tenure-track faculty members at Brandeis University voted to form a union affiliated with Service Employees International Union, 120-28, they announced Friday. More than 80 percent of eligible faculty members participated in the election. Irv Epstein, Brandeis’s interim provost, said in a statement, “We look forward to working with the SEIU to reach a collective bargaining agreement for these employees.” ‘
December 19, 2015
Adjunct, part-time faculty vote to unionize w/ SEIU at Brandeis
Massachusetts Community Colleges
“Massachusetts Community College Council members for weeks have been participating in work-to-rule, a type of protest in labor negotiations in which the employees perform only the tasks required by their contract.”
Student workers at UMass Amherst fight for “just cause”, fair treatment.
December 15, 2015
Student Workers Fight for Just Cause
“… Resident Assistants and Peer Mentors…“live and work in undergraduate residence halls coordinating student activities, assisting with security functions, and providing peer counseling, crisis intervention and resource referral services. … UMass refuses to agree to ‘just cause’ for discipline, even though all other unionized employees at UMass Amherst have such protections.”
‘UMass administrators want to keep the power to fire RAs and PMs without any need to justify their decisions .… When RAs and PMs are fired, they not only lose their pay and benefits (including their room subsidy) but they are immediately evicted from University housing, often throwing their lives into chaos and interrupting their education.”’