Here is your SFCC-AAUP summer update for the upcoming week of July 15, 2018. In this week’s update:
· Update: Summary of Last Friday’s Labor Board Meeting
· New: Request from HR to Sign Faculty Contracts
· New: Information Request/Financial Analysis Assistance from National AAUP Office
· Reminder: Faculty Happy Hour, Wednesday, July 18th at 5:00 at Tumbleroot
· New: Tentative Convocation Week Meeting, Monday, August 13th, 1-2:30
Update: Summary of Last Friday’s Labor Board Meeting
Last Friday, the Local Labor Board convened for its monthly meeting. Public comments were made by two faculty members: Xubi Wilson, representing Faculty Senate, and Bethany Carson, representing SFCC-AAUP. Xubi spoke about the faculty’s continued desire to communicate more directly with administration regarding immediate issues unrelated to contract negotiations—a concern that was raised at the very first labor board meeting last November. Bethany read a statement requesting that the administration’s board representative and the agent of the board recuse themselves in order to reconstitute a more fairly representative board—a recommendation reiterated later in the meeting by SFCC-AAUP attorney, James Montalbano, who joined us for the day (CNM’s union president, Mark Love-Williamson also joined us in a show of solidarity between our faculty unions). The board made no reply to this request and took no action to recuse, leaving what should be a balanced, impartial board still heavily biased toward the administration.
Representatives from SFCC-AAUP’s Negotiations Team and the administration’s team then presented bargaining process updates. Again, the necessity of efficient and effective communication between the parties was the focus. While both teams noted that negotiations were moving forward, and while the board’s neutral member, Marlene Schwalje, stated that it seemed as if both parties were satisfied with the pace of negotiations, SFCC-AAUP again expressed concern over the administration’s seeming reluctance to “TA” articles efficiently. To date, still only four articles have been “TA’d,” an exceedingly small number, especially when the administration appears to keep pushing for a summer contract ratification. SFCC-AAUP emphasized, again, that a successful ratification vote for the contract would require two things: first, union members need contract language that represents ideals they can actually vote in favor of ratifying, and second, faculty require an inclusive process that invites robust participation from all our members, not just the negotiating teams and officers. For this reason, because most faculty are off-contract during the summer, SFCC-AAUP stated clearly that summer ratification is not acceptable. SFCC-AAUP also expressed concern over the administration’s continued reluctance to incorporate language suggested by SFCC-AAUP into contract articles. It raises a clear question for the union about whether the college is genuine in its stated interest in quick contract ratification.
Finally, the board scheduled a hearing for the two PPCs filed—one against the administration by the union and one against the union by the administration. The hearing is scheduled for August 10th, beginning at 9:00.
SFCC-AAUP remains deeply concerned that the outcome of these PPCs will be determined by a board unfairly biased toward the administration (an issue that has now been raised in two articles run in The Santa Fe New Mexican, the most recent of which can be found at the following link: http://www.santafenewmexican.com/news/education/santa-fe-community-college-s-interim-president-ready-for-long/article_c9c546f2-588e-52da-99d8-090642e2330a.html).
We remain hopeful that the labor board will act to resolve this inequity before the August 10thhearings. Local labor unions including AFSME and AFT—as well as other local political organizations—have received our press releases regarding this issue and have expressed interest in supporting us.
New: Request from HR to Sign Faculty Contracts
As we wrote in the brief update earlier this week, Human Resources has alerted faculty that new contracts are ready to be signed. We are still in the process of ensuring that status quo language has not been disrupted. Because there is no explicit deadline for signing these new contracts, we suggest union members wait a short time until we can assure ourselves that there are no issues with the new contract language. Again, if you are reviewing your contract, it should represent “status quo.” The college has assured us via email that the new contract’s language will be “exactly the same” as what appeared on our 2017-2018 contracts. As a formality, we have asked to verify that this is the case. We will follow up very shortly with an announcement when we are certain all is well.
New: Information Request/Financial Analysis Assistance from National AAUP Office
SFCC-AAUP is thrilled to announce that we are partnering with Rudy Fichtenbaum, the President of national AAUP, as our new financial and information analyst. Rudy will be assisting us in analyzing the requests that we have made of the college for financial information, the costs of which will be paid for through the AAUP grant fund. We are honored to have such a seasoned and respected member of the larger AAUP organization on our team!
Reminder: Faculty Happy Hour, Wednesday, July 18th at 5:00 at Tumbleroot
It’s been an eventful summer and we would love to have the opportunity to sit and chat together. We would especially like to acknowledge and celebrate our dedicated Negotiations Team, who will be submitting a complete CBA to the administration tomorrow, right on schedule! These faculty members have worked diligently to incorporate your ideas and your feedback into a CBA from which we can continue to negotiate toward a strong first contract. Please join your fellow faculty members on Wednesday, July 18th at 5:00 at Tumbleroot, the newer brewery and distillery in the Rufina area. We look forward to an evening of celebration, good conversation, and exciting plan-making!
New: Tentative Convocation Week Meeting, Monday, August 13th, 1-2:30
As we begin to plan for a new semester, please tentatively mark your calendars for our first meeting of the fall during convocation week: Monday, August 13th, from 1-2:30, just after Faculty Senate, as usual. We will update you with the agenda later in the summer.
As always, please feel free to contact us with your questions or concerns by replying to this email.
SFCC-AAUP Executive Committee