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October 20, 2012

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Contact: Lauren Gutshall
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APSCUF Leadership Unanimously Approves Strike Authorization
Strike authorization vote now goes before full membership

State College – Today, the leadership of the Association of Pennsylvania State College and University Faculties (APSCUF) met in State College and approved a strike authorization vote. The organization represents the 6,000 faculty and coaches at the 14 universities in the State System of Higher Education (PASSHE).

Faculty members have been working for 15 months without a contract. APSCUF’s leadership body, made up of 106 delegates from the 14 state-owned institutions, unanimously approved the strike authorization.

Dr. Steve Hicks, president of APSCUF, stated, “Faculty members do not want to strike. We do not make this decision lightly. We want to assure our students and their families that we will continue to do everything we can to settle a fair contract with PASSHE.”

In September, APSCUF offered binding interest arbitration to the State System. On Monday, October 15, the Chancellor indicated PASSHE’s refusal to have a third party arbitrate the differences.

“We had hoped that the Chancellor would recognize that it is in the best interests of our students to settle a fair contract with APSCUF,” Hicks said. “Faculty working conditions are student learning conditions. We want a fair contract so that we can continue to provide quality education to our students.”

The key outstanding issues include health care for active members, health benefits for retirees, distance education, and compensation for temporary faculty members.

“Temporary faculty are being asked to take a drastic pay cut. They are already the lowest paid members of our union,” said APSCUF vice president Ken Mash. “The State System is demanding more concessions from faculty than were asked of any other public-sector union in the state. APSCUF stands united for all faculty.”

A strike authorization vote now goes to the full APSCUF membership. Faculty members on all 14 campuses will take a strike authorization vote in November.