ducation and the
Call for Papers: National Center's 46th Annual Conference April 7-9, 2019
The National Center has begun work on our 46th annual labor-management conference. It will be held at the CUNY Graduate Center on
April 7-9, 2019.
A Call for Papers, Presentations, and Workshops has been issued inviting scholars and practitioners from multiple disciplines to submit abstracts of proposed papers, panels, or interactive workshops for next year's conference. In particular, we are
interested in scholarship related to the Janus v. AFSCME decision including its impact on collective bargaining in higher education and the professions.
e welcome proposals for the presentation of recent research and proposals by authors of recently published books relevant to higher education, professional employment, unionization, collective bargaining, labor relations, or labor history.
Those interested in presenting their work should upload an abstract by September 7, 2018 to
that includes a description of the proposed paper, panel or interactive workshop. Abstracts of panels and workshops should include a list of invited participants including their title and aﬃliation. Questions concerning the call for papers
should be emailed to
2019 National Center Annual Conference.
William A. Herbert
Janus v. AFSCME: S. Ct. Rules Open Shop is a Constitutional Mandate
As anticipated, the United States Supreme Court's in
Janus v. AFSCME
overturned well-established precedent and ruled that an agency fee requirement in the public sector violates the First Amendment. The majority decision is a momentous event in labor law history because it makes "right to work" a constitutional mandate for the first time rather than a subject that can be legislated or negotiated.
The Janus decision is reflective of judicial activism by a conservative majority that has a clear ideological agenda. The majority reached its decision without a developed factual record. The lack of a such a record did not deter the majority from reaching factual findings beyond the evidence in the record.
The decision will likely have a substantial impact on public sector collective bargaining relationships. A primary purpose of the agency shop was maintenance of labor peace, a reason found insufficient by the Janus majority.
As a result of the decision, unions representing faculty, graduate students, and non-academic employees and professionals in the public sector will continue with their mobilization efforts and renewed activism, which has been underway for the past several years.
To contextualize the decision, we must consider the history of the agency shop in public sector labor law history. The massive growth in unionization in public sector higher education began with the enactment of state collective bargaining laws in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Overall union density in the public sector grew rapidly even though most of those laws as originally enacted did not permit agency fees.
By 1973, Hawaii and Rhode Island were the only states that required agency fees and handful of other state laws allowed the subject to be negotiated. Court and agency decisions in many states found that the agency shop was prohibited. A 1973 study of 14 faculty collective bargaining agreements at four-year found that none imposed an agency fee requirement. The uncertainly in the law concerning agency fees resulted in the early faculty contracts at CUNY and SUNY to include reopener clauses related to that subject.
Over the decades, advocacy by public sector employers and unions led to statutory amendments to mandate an agency fee or to make the subject a mandatory subject of negotiations. It was understood by labor and management that the agency fee helped in avoiding disruptions in the public sector workplace. Those agency fee statutory and contractual provisions are now unconstitutional as the result of the Janus decision.
In light of the Supreme Court's decision, collective bargaining agreements that include agency fee provisions may have to be reopened. Those negotiations can lead to creative solutions for maintaining labor peace by granting union representatives greater access to bargaining unit members, increased use of office space to hold union meetings, and more information relating to bargaining unit members.
Brown University: Agreement Reached with AFT for GSE Election
On June 21, 2018, Brown University, Stand Up for Graduate Student Employees (SUGSE) and the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) entered into an
for the conduct of a non-NLRB election that can lead to voluntary recognition by the university of SUGSE-AFT as the exclusive representative of graduate assistants (teaching assistants, research assistants and proctorships) for purposes of collective bargaining. The agreement follows similar procedures negotiated at Georgetown University, Cornell University, New York University, and the University of Connecticut.
The negotiated terms provide for a mail ballot election to be conducted by the American Arbitration Association (AAA) after SUGSE-AFT has submitted a showing of support from at least 30% of the proposed unit of graduate assistants: all Brown doctoral and masters students who conduct research or instructional services. The authorizations must have been signed within one year of the date of submission.
If the election conducted by AAA demonstrates that a majority of graduate assistants support representation, the university will voluntarily recognize SUGSE-AFT and commence negotiations. Disputes concerning the election process will be resolved by an arbitrator selected by the parties.
The agreement does not mandate that the university remain neutral in the election. It provides that the university can host forums for public discussion concerning the unionization efforts that can include university representatives, SUGSE-AFT, and the Graduate Student Council (GSC). The parties also agreed to create a labor-management committee to discuss issues related to the agreement.
Under the agreement, the parties will bargaining only over bread and butter issues to the exclusion of such issues as academic freedom, admission to graduate programs, the structure of academic programs, course assignments, and teaching methods.
The agreement expires on April 15, 2019, upon voluntarily recognition of the union by SUGSE-AFT, or if the NLRB overrules its decision in
University, 364 NLRB No. 90 (2016) before the university and SUGSE-AFT reach a collective bargaining agreement.
Univ. of Missouri: Court Rules GSE Have Constitutional Right to Unionize
Coalition of Graduate Workers v. Curators of the University of Missouri, Boone County Circuit Court, Case No. 16 BA-CV01634
On June 21, 2018,
Missouri Circuit Court Judge Jeff Harris
issued a decision granting summary judgment in favor of the Coalition of Graduate Workers (CGW) at the University of Missouri in its lawsuit seeking to compel the university to recognize it and commence negotiations concerning 2,600 graduate students who receive compensation for work on the university's Columbia campus.
The case stems from the university's denial of requests by CGW in late 2015 and early 2016 for the conduct of an election among graduate students to determine whether they want CGW to be their exclusive representative for purposes of collective bargaining. Following the university's refusal to conduct the election, CGW arranged for the League of Women Voters to conduct the election, which was held on April 18 and 19, 2016. In the election, 84% of the graduate students voted in favor of union representation but the university refused to recognize CGW and commence negotiations.
The CGW lawsuit is based on Missouri Constitution, Article I, Section 29, which states that "employees shall have the right to organize and bargain collectively through representatives of their choosing." In
Independence-NEA v. Independence School District, 223 S.W. 3d 131 (Mo. 2007), Missouri's highest court ruled that the state constitutional provision covered both private sector and public sector employees, including those not covered under the state's public sector collective bargaining statute.
In his recent decision, Judge Harris concluded that the at-issue graduate students were employees under state constitutional provision. He noted that the provision did not include any exceptions and that graduate students were, in fact, employees under Missouri law because they are hired by the university to perform work for compensation. They are paid through stipends or hourly rates for various forms of work: teaching classes; leading discussions or lab sections; proctoring and grading exams; preparing and grading lab exams; assisting faculty with research and writing; and staffing the library. In addition, the work of the graduate students is controlled by the university, and the university classifies them as employees in its policies and practices.
Next, Judge Harris ruled that the appropriate remedy for the university's violation of the state constitutional rights of its graduate students was to order the university to recognize and commence negotiations with CGW. The remedy was based upon the results of the election conducted by the League of Women Voters demonstrating that the graduate students on the Columbia campus had selected CGW as their exclusive representative for purposes of collective bargaining.
Following issuance of the decision, University of Missouri System President Mun Choi
the school's intent to appeal.
Nazareth College of Rochester: SEIU Certified to Represent PT NTT Unit
Nazareth College of Rochester
, NLRB Case No. 03-RC-218093
On June 13, 2018, SEIU was certified by the NLRB to represent a unit of 370 part-time non-tenure track faculty at the Nazareth College of Rochester. The certification followed an election conducted on June 5, 2018 in which 184 faculty members voted in favor of representation and 61 voted against.
The following is the description of the at-issue unit at Nazareth College of Rochester:
Include: All part-time faculty and adjunct faculty employed by the Employer who perform instructional services for matriculated and non-matriculated individuals, and all part-time English Language Institute (ELI) instructors.
Excluded: All students and all other employees including, full-time employees, tenured and tenure-track faculty, full-time non-tenure track faculty, visiting faculty, otherwise eligible voters who hold another position with the College (with the exception of those who also hold the position of a part-time community music teacher), part-time community music teachers (with the exception of those who also hold a position otherwise included), full-time instructors, faculty emeriti, faculty with Rank and Time, Executive Directors, Directors, Associate Directors, Assistant Directors, Deans, Associate Deans, Assistant Deans, Chairs of Departments, Co-Chairs of Departments, full-time and part-time faculty who teach exclusively online, coaches, assistant coaches, camp counselors, chaperones, trainers, tutors, managerial employees, office clerical employees, guards, and professional employees and supervisors as defined in the Act.
Oregon State Univ.: AAUP-AFT File to Represent Faculty and Post-Docs
|Oregon State University, OERB Case No. RC-006-18
On June 5, 2018, United Academics of Oregon State University, AAUP-AFT, AFL-CIO filed a petition seeking to represent a unit of approximately 2,400 faculty and post-doctoral students at the Oregon State University. The following is the proposed unit sought in the representation petition:
All faculty employed by Oregon State University with rank (including those on Academic Wage Appointments), a well as PostDoctoral Scholars and PostDoctoral Fellows, but excluding: (1) confidential employees; (2) faculty employed as a president, vice president, provost, vice provost, dean, associate dean, assistant dean, head or equivalent position; (3) faculty employed in an administrative position without a reasonable expectation of teaching, research or other scholarly accomplishments; (4) unclassified employee with No Rank; and (5) faculty who are not considered supervisory under ORS 243.650(23)(c)(C), but supervise other faculty with rank (including those on Academic Wage Appointments), PostDoctoral Scholars, and/or PostDoctoral Fellows.
Oregon Institute of Tech.: AAUP Petitions to Represent Dept. Chairs
Oregon Institute of Technology, OERB Case No. RC-007-18
On June 5, 2018, AAUP filed a petition to represent a unit of approximately 16 department chairs at the Oregon Institute of Technology. The following is the proposed unit sought in the petition:
All faculty department chairs at the Oregon Institute of Technology, excluding employees in the following groups: (1) faculty employed as a president, vice president, provost, vice provost, dean, associate dean, assistant dean, hear or equivalent position; (2) faculty employed in an administrative position without a reasonable expectation of teaching, research or other scholarly accomplishments; (3) classified staff; (4) confidential employees; and (5) all faculty, instructors or librarians in any other bargaining unit.
Oregon Institute of Tech: AAUP Files to Represent FT Faculty
Oregon Institute of Technology, OERB Case No. RC-008-18
On June 5, 2018, AAUP filed a
seeking to represent a unit of approximately 172 full time faculty, instructors, and librarians working for the Oregon Institute of Technology. The following is the proposed unit sough in the petition:
All full time faculty, instructors, and librarians working at .5 FTE or above at the Oregon Institute of Technology, but excluding employees in the following groups: (1) faculty employed as a president, vice president, provost, vice provost, dean, associate dean, assistant dean, hear or equivalent position; (2) faculty employed in an administrative position without a reasonable expectation of teaching, research or other scholarly accomplishments; (3) classified staff; (4) confidential employees; and (5) faculty chairs.
Loyola University Chicago: Petition Filed to Represent Campus Police
Loyola University Chicago, NLRB Case No.13-RC-222580
On June 22, 2018, the Loyola Chicago Police Benevolent Association filed a representation petition seeking to represent a unit of 23 full time police officers at Loyola University Chicago. The following is the at-issue bargaining unit:
Included: All full time police officers in the rank of patrol employed by Loyola University Chicago.
Excluded: All confidential,supervisory,and managerial employees as defined by the NLRA.
Job Posting: FIT Director of Labor & Employee Relations
The Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT), an internationally renowned college of art and design, business and technology, of the State University of New York, invites nominations and applications for a Director of Labor & Employee Relations.
Reporting to the Vice President of Human Resources Management and Labor Relations, the Director will provide leadership by designing, planning and implementing policies and procedures which successfully integrates human resource strategies while ensuring compliance within Human Resources and Labor Relations parameters and the provisions of the collective bargaining agreement; representing the administration in the union-management relationships, establishing and maintaining an effective labor-management relationships; creating a positive working environment and building positive labor relations by promoting open lines of communication among employees, supervisors, faculty, senior administration, and the union; anticipating to alleviate potential problem situations at the earliest possible stage; and offering guidance, ongoing higher education best practices, and assurance of consistency in support of positive outcomes.
The Director will take the lead in labor and employee relations, including:
- Leading the design, planning and implementing ER/LR procedures and processes to ensure consistent applications of contract administration
- Training and leading Human Resource Generalists in ER/LR procedures and processes, including but not limited to contract administration, investigations, conflict resolution, performance improvement plans, writing reports, memoranda and other assessments, data tracking, record keeping, etc.
- Ensure effective operations of employee and labor relations program development, process improvement, and integration with other areas in the Office of Human Resources.
- Participate on departmental and/or interdepartmental committees/projects to address problems and facilitate information exchange about programs, problems, etc. Provides information to others (oral or written) to explain/clarify problems, issues or requests.
- Analyze and evaluate ongoing employee and labor relations programs and procedures to identify areas where adjustments/improvements are needed.
- Conducts, directs, oversees and/or otherwise assists with employee investigations as needed.
- Perform interventions in employee relations and labor relations when necessary. Maintaining regular relationships with the United College Employees of FIT (FIT's single union).
- Identifies trends and develops effective strategies to reduce grievances or other disputes.
- Preparing drafts of administration's bargaining position for review by VP HRM & LR and the President.
- Serving as a key member of the administration's negotiating team.
- Working closely with the College's labor lawyer(s) and the Office of the General Counsel representing the College in grievances, discipline hearings, including, as appropriate, arbitration hearings and the Public Employment Relations Board
- Maintaining records necessary for efficient and effective job performance.
- Creating reports and recommending appropriate action (including disciplinary measures) to the VP HRM & LR.
- Evaluating performance matters.
- Provide ongoing training in labor and employee relations matters with senior administrators, chairs, supervisors and Employee Assistance Program leaders.
- Manage the U.C.E. classification re-evaluation process in conjunction with the HR Generalists.
- Supervising the Labor Relations Specialist position, developing performance appraisals plan to ensure objective are being met.
Other duties and projects as assigned:
The Director will demonstrate a leadership role that is facilitative and collaborative by building partnerships between Human Resources and other college-wide departments. Close interaction with and demonstrated respect for faculty, staff, students and the union are critical to success. The Director is strategic, data-oriented, and has a high comfort using technology tools, driven by tracking trends, measuring and interpreting results. Maintains composure, solves complex and sensitive problems with effective communication and serves as a role model for others by using diplomacy and tact. Copes well in evolving environment and can tolerate ambiguity and uncertainty. Excellent communications skills both verbally and in writing which is customer-focused, thoughtful, and demonstrates critical thinking.
Master's Degree and five years of progressively more responsible experience in a labor relations position preferred or Bachelor's Degree plus seven to ten years of progressively more responsible experience in a labor relations position. Previous experience in a unionized higher education setting highly preferred. Additional education in the area of labor / employment law and PHR preferred. A sound understanding of labor law and labor-management relations. Highly developed interpersonal skills to negotiate with union representatives during stressful situations and to provide counseling to managers and associates. Strong writing skills necessary to prepare grievance responses and other sensitive communications. Assessment and judgement skills necessary to analyze and interpret bargaining agreements; remain abreast of legal requirements; develop negotiation data and strategies; evaluate employee grievances; identify and resolve problems, etc.
Additional Information: Salary dependent on experience.
Application Instructions: In order to be considered for the position, you must submit the following documents online:
* Cover letter-Please include salary requirements
Please note that due to the high volume of applications we receive, we are unable to contact each applicant individually regarding his or her application status.
FIT is firmly committed to creating an environment that will attract and retain people of diverse racial and cultural backgrounds. By providing a learning and working environment that encourages, utilizes, respects, and appreciates the full expression of every individual's ability, the FIT community fosters its mission and grows because of its rich, pluralistic experience. FIT is committed to prohibiting discrimination, whether based on race, color, national origin, sex, gender, gender identity, religion, ethnic background, age, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, military service status, genetic information, pregnancy, familial status, citizenship status (except as required to comply with law), or any other criterion prohibited by applicable federal, state, or local laws. FIT is committed to providing equal opportunity in employment, including the opportunity for upward mobility for all qualified individuals. Applications from minorities, women, veterans, and persons with disabilities are encouraged. Inquiries regarding FIT's non-discrimination policies may be directed to the Affirmative Action Officer/Title IX Coordinator, 212 217.3360,
Journal of Collective Bargaining in the Academy
The Journal of Collective Bargaining in the Academy is the National Center's peer review multi-disciplinary journal that is co-edited by Jeffrey Cross, Eastern Illinois University, and Gary Rhoades, University of Arizona.
We encourage scholars, practitioners, and graduate students in the fields of collective bargaining, labor representation, labor relations, and labor history to submit research articles, op-eds, and practitioner perspectives for potential publication. The Journal is particularly interested in contributions related to collective bargaining and unionization issues in a post-Janus world.
The following are articles published in the latest Journal volume:
The Slippery Slope of "Unique"
by Daniel J. Julius counters the commonly held notion among academics that their collective bargaining is essentially different from other bargaining units.
The History Books Tell It? Collective Bargaining in Higher Education in the 1940s
by William A. Herbert examines the little-known history of collective bargaining in higher education from the 1940s including the collective bargaining program instituted by the University of Illinois and the role of United Public Workers of America and its predecessor unions in negotiating the first contracts for faculty before the union was destroyed during the McCarthy era.
The Accidental Academic: Reflections on 50 Years in Academic Collective Bargaining
by William Connellan gives a retrospective from a 50-year veteran in academic labor relations that reminds us of the complexity of bargaining, with not only the internal tensions, but the external dimension to what happens at the bargaining table.
The Journal of Collective Bargaining in the Academy is
supported, in part, by a generous contribution from
TIAA-CREF and is hosted by the institutional repository of Eastern Illinois University.
Upcoming Conferences of Interest
The following are some upcoming conferences that you may be interested in attending:
July 21-24, 2018:
The Association of Labor Relations Agencies (ALRA) will be holding its 2018 Annual Conference in Boston, Massachusetts on July 21-24, 2018. The National Center will be participating in a labor-management panel on July 23, 2018 examining collective bargaining in higher education. Information concerning the conference is available in the April 2018 ALRA Adviser.
August 3-5, 2018:
The Coalition of Contingent Academic Labor will be holding
on August 3-5, 2018 at San Jose State University, California.
August 16-19, 2018:
The Coalition of Graduate Employee Unions will be holding its annual meeting of North American graduate employees in New York City on August 15-19, 2018.