UAUO Protest Pollack-Pelzner Linfield University

Recently the President of Linfield University, Miles K. Davis, summarily fired Professor Daniel Pollack-Pelzner, a Shakespeare scholar who had held an endowed chair in the Department of English and had represented the faculty as a member of the Board of Trustees. According to the university administration, Pollack-Pelzner was terminated for reasons unrelated to his achievements as a teacher, researcher, or publishing scholar. Rather, the administration states that he was sacked because he had “engaged in conduct that is harmful to the university,” specifically that he had “violated instructions to preserve the attorney-client privilege” and that he had “circulated false statements…

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Reflections from UA’s new president

Dear Bargaining Unit Members, I am incredibly honored and humbled to be given the opportunity to serve as your President. I promise you I don’t take this lightly and will work my ass off to do what I can do. Besides, I still suffer from the “gotta work twice as hard and expect half as much” motto that I’ve known from too early. We’ve got a bargaining year, re-opening, and the business-as-usual challenges of equitable pay and attacks on academic freedom. Working conditions, especially for those tasked with caring for others, are not as accommodating as they need to be….

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United Academics Outstanding Contributions Award Winners

United Academics Strong Voice Award Nomination  We, the undersigned, are nominating our colleagues Elizabeth Peterson, Kate Thornhill, and Ann Shaffer for the United Academics Strong Voice Award. While many union members showed extraordinary leadership and advocacy this past year, we believe that our librarian colleagues responded to this crisis with fierce resilience and sustained support throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.  Like many career faculty across campus during the 2020 spring and summer terms, 15 librarians were at risk of being demoted to 0.1 FTE due to the administration’s perceived budget shortfalls. Additionally, five librarians who were up for promotion were put…

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Upcoming Unit-level Policymaking Workshop and much more!

Join us Tuesday, May 25 for a themed Lunch with your Local: Unit-level Policymaking. We will discuss process and best practices for creating and revising unit-level policies, with plenty of time for Q&A. Zoom in from noon-1pm.   AAUP Oregon will be hosting a meeting on May 20th from 4 pm – 5 pm PT to make concrete plans for legislative outreach, particularly to our Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden. We need as many faculty, staff, students, and community members taking part as possible to make sure our voices are heard loud and clear! Register here for the AAUP…

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Mental Health Month

May is Mental Health Month! Various departments and programs on campus have put out lists of resources that we encourage you to share with your students as appropriate, but if you haven’t already seen some of those, here are some you may choose to share. Note that UA’s board and staff have not personally used all of these services and resources. UO Student Resources list: https://blogs.uoregon.edu/online/uo-resources/ This list has resources for navigating your student experience not limited to mental health; being aware of some of these programs and services, including tutoring, technical support, and more, may help some students address and…

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A positive path forward

Dear Colleague, With the recent victory of the pay reduction plan being rescinded, and given that the financial outlook for state appropriations looks good (though still uncertain), the Executive Council of United Academics has agreed with the university to pause bargaining until this summer. At that point we’ll have a better idea of enrollment and know state appropriation numbers. It will also give us an opportunity to partner with the university in securing those financial resources from the state and recruiting a large, diverse student body. We hope this, in turn, will allow the administration more of a sense of…

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Legislative Updates from the Higher Ed Front

One might imagine in a beautiful state like ours, with its consistent Democratic majority of legislators committed to the values many of us UA members share, that we might experience some smooth sailing in virtual Salem. Well, at least when it comes to Higher Ed equity and Labor. Unfortunately, as many people of color and other marginalized groups understand, “progressive Oregon” has a long way to go… But the fight continues… HB2873 / SB712 Also known as the “HECC Voting Rights” Bill, Higher Ed folks have been trying to amend the Higher Education Coordinating Commission (HECC) voting rights makeup by…

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Possible Faculty Strike at Oregon Institute of Technology

Dear Colleagues, In the meantime, we wanted to let you know what is happening to our colleagues at the Oregon Institute of Technology in Klamath Falls. Almost two years ago now, the approximately 160 faculty at OIT formed a union and affiliated with the AAUP. For the last 15 months, they have been trying to bargain their first contract with the administration. It has been very difficult, and negotiations have broken down. On March 10, the OIT administration declared “impasse” after six months of state-sponsored mediation. This means that in 30 days, the administration can lock the faculty out of their jobs…

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Statement of Support

Dear Colleagues, Members of our campus community and your wider communities have no doubt been shaken and distressed by last week’s attacks in Georgia. Our thoughts, grief, and sympathy go out to the victims, their families, and the Asian, Asian American, and Pacific Islander communities. We remember those who have been lost: Delaina Ashley Yaun, Paul Andre Michels, Xiaojie Tan, Daoyou Feng, Soon Chung Park, Hyun Jung Grant, Suncha Kim, and Yong Ae Yue, and those injured, Elcias R. Hernandez-Ortiz, in the Atlanta-area shootings. We know that this incident cuts deeply into the Asian community. These deaths are a reminder…

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United Academics Officer and Representative Elections

Open positions: All Executive Council and Representative Assembly positions are open! The Executive Council (EC) is the primary leadership body of United Academics with a focus on initiating, overseeing, or revising the program of the union. The EC consists of officers and the chairpersons of the Grievance and Contract Administration Committee; the Organizing and Membership Committee; and the Politics Committee. The Executive Council meets regularly, typically weekly during the academic year, to discuss issues that impact faculty and campus. Representatives (reps) are elected to 2-year terms and have the authority to vote on union business, including approval of the budget…

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Solidarity and Community Events

Campaign for Caregivers: Please sign the petition!

Recently, the Center for the Study of Women in Society sent an urgent request to University of Oregon leadership asking for action to alleviate labor inequities for faculty, staff, and GEs that have arisen from the coronavirus pandemic. As the faculty testimonials  below demonstrate, COVID-19 has uncovered many aspects of our institutional practice that have historically rendered the labor of caregivers invisible and left them more vulnerable. By “caregiver,” we mean anyone who regularly looks after a child, a dependent, and/or a sick, elderly, or disabled person without pay. Caregivers can be of any gender and are usually members of…

State of Oregon Campus Resources For DACA Students

Oregon’s public universities and community colleges are encouraging DACA students to consult with immigration attorneys and potentially renew their applications as soon as possible. Students needing assistance in renewing DACA paperwork can reach out to contacts at each institution. A list of contacts for Oregon’s public universities and community colleges can be found here. United Academics asks for your help in amplifying this message and sharing these resources with Oregon’s DACA students.

Take Action Today For Part-Time Faculty Health Care

Please take a moment to urge legislators to pass HB 4146, the Part-Time Faculty Health Care Bill. HB 4146 will provide affordable health care to part-time faculty who teach more than half-time when their hours are pooled across Oregon’s public universities and community colleges. After years of trying to close the health insurance gap for these faculty, our coalition believes we can pass this important legislation this session. We need the Ways & Means Committee of the Oregon Legislature to support our bill in order to make that happen! Support passage of HB 4146 by: Emailing the Senate President, Speaker of the…

UA letter in support of UCSC graduate students

Dear Chancellor Larive and Campus Provost/Executive Vice Chancellor Kietzer: As President of the United Academics of the University of Oregon, I am writing in solidarity with the Graduate Student Association at UC Santa Cruz.  United Academics is a wall-to-wall faculty union with 1700 members, some of whom were once graduate students at UC Santa Cruz. As a comparable public research university on the West Coast, we understand the pressures of running a university in an expensive location. However, we also recognize that below-living wages are detrimental to the academy and society, and moreover exaggerate systemic inequities in educational attainment. Does…

National Day of Action in Defense of Grad Rights

On November 14th graduate workers and their allies in higher education, the labor movement, and their communities will gather in Chicago, Boston, and Washington D.C. to protest the National Labor Relations Board’s attack on their rights. Ahead of this day of action we are aiming to collect 3000 comments to the NLRB.  Encourage friends and colleagues to submit comments on this page.