Oct. 14, 2016
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
For more information, contact:
Kathryn Morton, firstname.lastname@example.org or 717-236-7486
A three-day bargaining session begins today between the Association of Pennsylvania State College and University Faculties and the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education.
“We’re returning to the table because we are committed to our students and quality education, and it’s time to get this done,” APSCUF President Dr. Kenneth M. Mash said. “Our students and faculties have been through enough. We will do all we can to get a contract that is fair to students and to members. That’s our goal: A fair contract, not a strike.”
But APSCUF negotiators head into these talks deeply disappointed, Mash said.
“Yesterday the State System published proposals on its website that reiterate their team’s desire to cut the pay of our adjunct faculty, who are our most vulnerable colleagues,” he said. “Officially they call it a ‘change in workload,’ but everyone can see through that spin. The fact is that the State System wants to cut adjunct pay 20 percent.
“Eighty percent of adjuncts are at the bottom of the instructor pay scale, and they’ll always be at the bottom. And 60 percent are women. We will not stand for a contract that treats our adjuncts so unfairly and that could, should they have families, put them below the poverty line. We remain shocked that anyone involved with the System or our universities would advocate such a proposal.”
Talks are slated to continue at least through Sunday at a neutral location. If an agreement is not in place but the teams are making progress, APSCUF will remain at the table, Mash said.
APSCUF faculty members will go on strike 5 a.m. Oct. 19 if the State System has not bargained a contract APSCUF believes is fair to students and members by that deadline. APSCUF objects to State System proposals that would affect the quality of education faculty members could provide to their students.
The two sides last met Sept. 29. APSCUF offered to meet Oct. 8–9 — a weekend faculty negotiators weren’t teaching — but the State System rejected those dates.
The faculty contract expired June 30, 2015, and negotiations have been ongoing since late 2014.
APSCUF represents about 5,500 faculty and coaches at the State System universities: Bloomsburg, California, Cheyney, Clarion, East Stroudsburg, Edinboro, Indiana, Kutztown, Lock Haven, Mansfield, Millersville, Shippensburg, Slippery Rock, and West Chester Universities of Pennsylvania.