Happy New Year!

2020 looks to be a busy year for United Academics. We begin bargaining this week, and we encourage you to come to our first bargaining session this Thursday, January 9, noon-3pm in the Crater Lake Room of the EMU. We will be presenting many of our most important proposals at the first session (including salary increases, better job security for career faculty, and parental leave). Healthy attendance at bargaining sessions improves our bargaining position since it shows the administration that faculty are paying attention and are behind their bargaining team. Please come and bring a colleague or three. You need not attend the entire session, and you can bring other work to do as you listen.

After the January 9th session, we invite you to join the bargaining team at Rennie’s for a debrief. We’d love to hear your thoughts about how bargaining went.

Whether or not you can attend bargaining (but do attend bargaining–bring a colleague!), please join us for the first General Membership Meeting of the year, Thursday, January 16, 5-7 in the Crater Lake Room (EMU 146). We’ll go over bargaining and have time for conversation and questions thereabout, and we’ll also discuss other union business, including ways you can get more involved this year. Put it in your calendar, and we’ll see you there!

2020 will be a busy year politically, too. The Oregon legislature will be in its “short” session this winter, and National (and local) elections loom. It hardly needs to be said that the 2020 Presidential and Congressional elections will have particular importance this year. As alarming as it is to write, the democratic character of our country is under attack. One of our political parties has turned itself to preservation of power and away from representative governance. As such, gerrymandering, voter de-registration, and voter ID laws have become tools to deny power to the people. And, of course, extreme limits to union power continue to affect us and our faculty cousins across the country. Progressive voters will be fighting an uphill battle this year, and we encourage you to become involved in any way you can to ensure a progressive victory in November. As the election gets closer, you will see opportunities from United Academics to get further involved.

Finally, we want to remind members that United Academics is your union. Our officers and staff are here to serve the faculty and students of the University of Oregon. If you have any questions or issues we may be able to help resolve, please reach out. In most cases, we are able to point faculty to appropriate resources or resolve issues informally. Occasionally an issue arises to the level of a grievance; we can obviously help with those too.

We wish a successful 2020 to all! Be on the lookout for bargaining updates and ways to get involved!

United Academics Executive Council