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December 30, 2009
Dear Longy Faculty Colleagues:
We hope you have had an enjoyable holiday season and are feeling refreshed for the year ahead.
Before the holiday break, we arranged a series of opportunities for Longy faculty to ask questions and learn more about what a Longy faculty union would mean. That series will continue this month at the Sheraton
Commander Hotel, in the 16 Garden Street Café, at the following times:
1. Wednesday, January 6, 2010, 12:00 to 1:30 PM
2. Thursday, January 14, 2010, 5:30 to 7:00 PM (a revised time)
We have been communicating with faculty since last school year about their concerns for the institution and the students. We received an overwhelming number of signed union authorization cards.
Thus far we have had four opportunities for faculty to come together to discuss issues, share viewpoints and answer questions. In attendance have been Longy faculty members, presidents and members of other unions, and union representatives. All faculty have been invited.
If you have not been able to attend any of the previous meetings and the additional times listed above are not convenient, we continue to encourage you to read the FAQ (frequently asked questions) document that was emailed and mailed. We are regularly updating the FAQ pages as questions arise, including answers to many of the questions posed in a recent communication from a few faculty members. The FAQ is available at our website, www.longyfacultyunion.org. We have also posted communications on the faculty department bulletin board at Longy.
Since the initial move toward forming a Longy faculty union, we have been listening, hearing, and helping us come together. You are the Longy Faculty Union and after you vote YES to become officially recognized as a collective bargaining unit, a negotiating committee chosen by you will begin the task of discovering your priorities for what will become a signed, legally binding collective bargaining agreement contract.
We thank our colleagues for their written invitation to what is referred to as a “town hall” meeting. Many have expressed concerns that such a setting, with administrators in attendance, will not foster an environment that
will allow faculty to speak freely. Furthermore, the NLRB will not participate in any campaign event sponsored by either side. Therefore, we respectfully decline the invitation to participate in the meeting planned by our colleagues and invite them and all faculty, as we have numerous times in the past, to the discussion gatherings that we have scheduled.
The administration, evidently fearful of a legally binding collective bargaining agreement, has opposed our efforts toward forming a union, and has posed questions that seem intended to confuse or mislead you. We also have questions we think all should consider:
• How much of Longy's money has the administration spent on retaining the services of Mintz Levin to fight our efforts to form a union?
• Why has the administration fought so hard to exclude faculty members from being included in the union?
• Is it true that we are all at-will employees that can be dismissed at anytime in spite of our performance?
• Who currently determines our compensation, benefits and working conditions?
• Has the administration been respecting and responding to the concerns of the Longy Faculty Committee (LFC)?
• Is it true our current handbook can be unilaterally changed at anytime by the administration? Who decides what is included in our handbook?
• How do faculty currently handle grievances as individuals? Do faculty feel the current grievance process is fair?
• Who has the final say in settling grievances with faculty?
• Who currently determines class reassignments?
• Why does the administration so desperately want us not to unionize?
Please feel free to contact us individually at our personal email addresses and/or phone numbers, listed at www.longyfacultyunion.org/contact.html, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Vote YES for a positive future at Longy