With a union in place, faculty can question why layoffs are allegedly needed and/or bargain over the impact of such action. Administrative decisions can be questioned and “inefficiencies” can be publicly identified all the way up the line. Despite economic uncertainties, represented groups can bargain absolute protections. Recent collective bargaining agreements for SIU Carbondale’s IEA Faculty Association, for example, ensure accountability and transparency of employer declared ‘financial exigency.’
Your SIUC counterparts have ratified a new collective bargaining agreement, hard-wrought in view of the five-day strike it took to get SIU to bargain seriously. You will see here details of the agreement, and note that the gains have little if anything to do with faculty salaries (as SIUC claimed ad infinitum), and almost everything to do with accountability (in times where ‘financial emergency’ can sometimes be used too loosely) as well as educational quality concerns around workload, class size, and more. The SIUC FA’s own website (http://siucfa.wordpress.com/) contains more details, including the entire agreement.
SIUC Law School Faculty are not in the SIUC Faculty Association bargaining unit and therefore do not enjoy binding arbitration as the last avenue of appeal in a grievance. Like the tenured law school professor in the case discussed here, SIUE faculty are not represented for the purposes of collective bargaining, and so a grievant can only appeal as far as the SIU Board of Trustees — not a neutral third party.
Increased enrollment at SIU Edwardsville and changes in the school’s General Education requirements may incline the administration to increase their use of non-tenure track (NTT) instructors. A provision in the SIU Carbondale faculty union contract codifies an average student:faculty ratio to maintain or increase tenure-line positions as needed.
Southern Illinois University President Glenn Poshard cannot keep the public from viewing his and other school officials’ employment contracts, an Illinois Appellate Court ruled recently.