News

15 Nov Always Someone To Talk To – UICUF Grievance Committee 

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  • There is always someone to talk to if you have a concern at work; don’t wait, contact your union if you think you need a hand!
  • UICUF’s Grievance Team has evolved since the union’s founding from a small, ad-hoc group of problem solvers, into a full committee with a grassroots structure.
  • If you’re interested in helping with grievance work, consider becoming a College Rep: some positions remain open, and there are elections coming in April 2020.
  • All members are invited to attend one of two 90-minute grievance training next week in UH2028 – 3:30-5pm, Tuesday, 11/19/19 OR 3-4:30pm, Wednesday, 11/20/19.

 

Did you know that the union has a committee dedicated to helping our members resolve situations in the workplace, like improper discipline, or failure to follow procedures around evaluations, discipline or pay determinations? UICUF’s Grievance Committee is always available to discuss your questions or concerns, and the absolute first thing we want you to know is this: DON’T WAIT!

If you are experiencing a problem at work, contact us ASAP. Even if it’s not an official grievance, the union may be able to help with advice or other informal problem-solving. If you do bring an issue to UICUF’s attention, we are committed to honoring confidentiality for our members, and will work with you at your discretion to find the best solution to the problems at hand.

What Is The Grievance Committee
UICUF’s Grievance Committee is a group of faculty dedicated to solving members’ issues, whether they ultimately result in a grievance, or can be resolved informally. The team is led by our Chief Steward, Robert Johnston, who has been working with members on their issues with the support of professional union staff since the union was formed.

This team couldn’t function, however, without the ground-up support of our College Representatives, each of whom is legally a Steward of the union, empowered to consult on issues with members. They provide a local voice and perspective on issues in their own Colleges, and act as an accessible link between the grievance team and individual members. You can visit our website to find your College Representatives if you ever need to contact them.

What Is The Grievance Committee Currently Working On
The Grievance Committee is, in some sense, always working to enforce our contract. This is often a matter of discussing contractual rights with faculty members, and informally working out solutions with program and departmental-level administrators. Over the last year, however, we have had a massive surge in grievance inquiries, including many that are serious infractions of the contract.

To address this influx, UICUF has recently revisited the role of the Grievance Committee in our bylaws, expanding it to include additional members so that they can handle the increased caseload. We are also holding more trainings for our College Representative so that they can be better Stewards at the local level and provide a more grass-roots response when issues affect more than just an individual.

Getting Involved
The best way to get involved with grievance support is to become a College Representative. There are currently open seats in some Colleges, and we will also be holding elections this coming Spring.

Want to learn more? We are holding grievance trainings for College Reps next week, and all UICUF members are welcome to join one of these sessions, to be held in University Hall 2028: 3:30-5pm, Tuesday, Nov, 19, and 3-4:30pm, Wednesday, Nov 20. Please RSVP with Jeff Edwards, UICUFJeff@gmail.com.

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We issue regular updates via email, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and on our website. We encourage everyone to like and follow us on social media. If you want to contribute your story, pictures, video, or other content related to the activities of the union, email us at UICUnitedFaculty@gmail.com. With your support, we are making UIC an even better place to work and learn!

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07 Nov Advocating for UIC in the UI System and State Legislature

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  • UICUF’s newly formed Advocacy Committee will look into budgets, funding formulas and other structural issues affecting education at UIC.
  • UI Board of Trustees to meet NEXT THURSDAY, 9am @Student Center West
  • Faculty Advisory Committee is open to new nominees. Submit your nominating petition by November 11 if you wish to be considered.

 

UICUF’s New Advocacy Committee
During contract negotiations last Spring we won many important victories for faculty, students, and the UIC community at large. However, it also became glaringly obvious that not everything we wanted to accomplish was going to be addressed at the bargaining table. Bigger issues, like state higher-education budgets, funding formulas that determine how those budgets are distributed, and other structural issues, are still determined largely in a black box, without meaningful transparency or accountability.

This realization inspired the creation of a new committee of UICUF members interested in digging into deeper issues of power and equity that affect the lives of faculty and students at UIC. Chief among these concerns are the mounting structural deficit that the UI Board has created through long-term tuition freezes, covered by the problematic stop-gap of raising campus fees and differentials that de facto continue increasing costs for students. This committee will also pursue greater transparency in how UofI’s budget is distributed amongst campuses.

If you’re interested in getting involved, contact Janet Smith. No financial or budgetary experience is necessary, as we will be building a broad coalition of faculty and students to push for greater transparency at the Board and State Legislative levels.

BoT Meets in Chicago Next Week
Whether you want to get more involved or just learn about how high level decisions for the UI system get made, going to next week’s Board of Trustees meeting is a great first step. Members who have attended in the past have described these proceedings as eye-opening, especially in how little attention is paid to one of the university’s primary functions, education. The meeting will be held here in Chicago, on UIC’s West Campus, in Student Center West, from 9am, Thursday, 11/14. If you are interested in joining other faculty going to the meeting, email us at UICUnitedFaculty@gmail.com.

UIC Faculty Advisory Committee
Now is also the time if you want to get involved in a long-running UIC institution, the Faculty Advisory Committee (unrelated to the union’s Advocacy Committee described above), which directly advises the administration on issues affecting the university. Interested faculty need to submit a nominating petition by November 11th. Instructions are listed on the petition form, but only 3 signatures of colleagues are required for a nomination, and the completed form must be filed in the Senate office in UH. We hope some of our intrepid UICUF members will take an interest in serving on this important committee!

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We issue regular updates via email, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and on our website. We encourage everyone to like and follow us on social media. If you want to contribute your story, pictures, video, or other content related to the activities of the union, email us at UICUnitedFaculty@gmail.com. With your support, we are making UIC an even better place to work and learn!

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31 Oct Retro Pay | COPE Info Session | Strike Updates

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  • Reminder: retro pay for the 2018-2019 school year should have appeared in October paychecks. We encourage you to double-check the amounts for accuracy.
  • UICUF COPE holding info session on IFT endorsement process next Thursday, 11/7
  • Strike updates: SEIU won tentative agreement | CTU has TA and will return to work tomorrow | Decatur teaching assistants currently on strike | Triton College workers announce 11/6 strike date

 

Retro Pay
We want to start this week’s message by reminding faculty to check your pay stubs from October. UIC previously stated that retroactive raises would be included in this month’s paycheck, and past experience tells us that despite best efforts, there are likely to be some errors. UICUF encourages our members to double check to ensure that their retro pay is present and accurately calculated. If you think there is an error in your retro pay, we recommend first speaking with your unit or college HR contact, but if this does not resolve the problem, you can contact us at UICUnitedFaculty@gmail.com.

COPE Info Session on IFT Endorsements
Next week, UICUF’s Committee on Political Education will host Illinois Federation of Teachers Legislative Director John Cusick, who will provide information about how the IFT’s candidate endorsement process works. As affiliates of the IFT, our members have a voice in this process, and we encourage faculty to attend the meeting and get involved.

What:  Information Session on the IFT Endorsement Process
When: Thursday, Nov. 7, 1:00 – 2:30pm
Where: Rm. 950, University Hall (in the Hist Dept).
Background: Beginning in December and extending through early February, the IFT will conduct a series of meetings with candidates for Illinois office, including but not restricted to the Illinois State Senate and House of Representatives. The purpose of these meetings is for IFT members to ask candidates their positions on a host of issues, including, though not restricted to, educational matters and policies. The meetings are open to all IFT members, and participation by UICUF members in the past has been highly appreciated.

Strike Updates
In other news from around the city, it’s been an eventful few weeks for Chicago’s education and organized labor communities. Chicago teachers and school support staff were forced to go on strike for fair contracts, and a third strike by City Parks District employees was averted at the 11th hour with an agreement they call “the best deal we have ever gotten.” In higher ed, Governors State University faculty and staff won a contract this month, and Triton College workers have announced a November 6 strike date if they do not have a fair contract in hand by that time. Decatur Federation of Teaching Assistants have also been on strike for a fair contract.

As of this afternoon, we’ve learned that all unions involved in the CPS strikes, including support staff and teachers, have reached tentative agreements and will be returning to work tomorrow, 11/1/19. SEIU won a contract earlier this week, but continued to honor picket lines pending an agreement on teacher contracts. Last night, the Chicago Teachers Union reached a tentative agreement on their contract, and today, they reached a return-to-work agreement with Mayor Lightfoot which includes making up five instructional days to cover days lost during the strike.

By all reports, the new contracts are a win for workers at Chicago Public Schools, and we will share more about the specifics of each on our social media channels as we learn more.

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We issue regular updates via email, FacebookTwitterYouTube, and on our website. We encourage everyone to like and follow us on social media. If you want to contribute your story, pictures, video, or other content related to the activities of the union, email us at UICUnitedFaculty@gmail.com. With your support, we are making UIC an even better place to work and learn!

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21 Oct CPS Strike Week 2 Update

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As of today, Monday, 10/21/19, the mass strike of CPS Teachers and school employees is continuing. Some progress has been made in negotiations, but its clear that we still need to keep the pressure on city officials if we hope to see a fair contract for Chicago’s teachers, school employees, and the students they serve.

The day began with pickets (which will continue every day from 6:30-10:30am) and demonstrations, and there will be another mass rally at Union Park at 2pm.

Tuesday’s events will include solidarity actions for the many other workers, including higher ed workers, who are fighting for fair contracts in and around Chicago. In particular, workers at Triton College will hold a rally to announce their own strike for a fair contract from 12-1pm (2000 5th Ave, River Grove, IL, 60171) and NEIU workers will rally 2-3pm after going 450 days without a contract (5500 N St Louis Ave, Chicago, IL 60625).

Wednesday’s events have not been made public yet, but expect major actions to be announced around the Mayor’s Budget Address and the Chicago Board of Education meeting at 10:30am (42 W. Madison Street, Garden Level, Board Room).

As before, we want to remind you to support our colleagues in CPS and other educational institutions around the city and state, in any way you can. UICUF stands in solidarity with the strikers, and will continue to do so until they win fair contracts that improve conditions in our city schools for workers, students and their communities.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to email us at UICUnitedFaculty@gmail.com.

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We issue regular updates via email, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and on our website. We encourage everyone to like and follow us on social media. If you want to contribute your story, pictures, video, or other content related to the activities of the union, email us at UICUnitedFaculty@gmail.com. With your support, we are making UIC an even better place to work and learn!

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16 Oct CPS Strike is Imminent Tomorrow

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  • A mass strike of Chicago teachers and school staff appears imminent TOMORROW, Thursday, 10/17/19
  • School pickets from 6:30am | UIC Solidarity Rally 11-Noon | Downtown Rally 1:30-5pm
  • Support the Strike: Don’t cross pickets | Join job actions and community events | Call the Mayor (312)-744-3300
  • Follow on Facebook: UICUF | CTU | SEIU | Solidarity Campaign
  • Other social media: Twitter | Instagram
  • Help feed students who may miss school-provided meals: Bread for Ed

 

At the time of this writing, a mass strike of Chicago teachers and school support staff appears imminent, with the bargaining teams saying they are still far from an agreement on a fair contract. We are awaiting final guidance from our fellow union workers in CTU/SEIU this evening, but we anticipate that strike activities will begin TOMORROW, Thursday, 10/17/19.

Sweeping changes have been proposed by Mayor Lightfoot, but not backed up in writing. Teachers and support staff have demanded that the City make good on promises concerning enforceable class size limits and fully staffing ALL schools with nurses, librarians, counselors and special ed teachers.

UIC United Faculty stands in full solidarity with striking workers at Chicago Public Schools, and we strongly encourage our members to do what they can to show support individually. There are many ways to support the strike and put pressure on City negotiators to offer workers, and the students and families they serve, a fair contract.

  • Honor Picket Lines: Pickets will begin at local schools from 6:30am tomorrow. Don’t cross them, and if you’re able, join them!
  • Attend Solidarity Events: A UIC Solidarity Rally is scheduled for 11-noon in the Quad tomorrow, and a downtown rally is scheduled for 1:30-5pm at the Chicago Board of Education (corner of Dearborn and Madison).
  • Call Mayor Lightfoot at 312-744-3300 and ask her to put her promises in writing in an enforceable contract!
  • Donate to Bread For Ed: Help feed children who will miss out on school-provided meals during the strike.

 

We will send periodic updates to keep you informed about the strike, but you can follow everything in real time via social media:

 

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to email us at UICUnitedFaculty@gmail.com.

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We issue regular updates via email, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and on our website. We encourage everyone to like and follow us on social media. If you want to contribute your story, pictures, video, or other content related to the activities of the union, email us at UICUnitedFaculty@gmail.com. With your support, we are making UIC an even better place to work and learn!

 

 

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03 Oct Meeting Recap – Our Fight is Far From Over

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  • UIC United Faculty held our Fall Membership Meeting Yesterday
  • One thing seems abundantly clear: There’s plenty of work ahead to make UIC an even better place to work and learn
  • UICUF Senate Caucus will tackle issues covered by statute that weren’t addressed in the contract
  • UICUF’s new Advocacy Committee will be working to change fundamentals in system governance, like how budgets are formulated
  • UICUF COPE will continue working on legislative issues affecting faculty

 

Yesterday, UICUF held it’s Fall Membership Meeting at Hull House, and as our leadership and committee chairs sounded off, one thing seemed abundantly clear: we may have won some major improvements in our contract negotiations this past Spring, but there’s still much more to do as we seek to continue improving working and learning conditions at UIC.

To recap, our contract victory this past May ensured a variety of improvements, from increased minimum salaries and guaranteed raise pools, to appointment and due process protections for NTT faculty, and workload protection for our entire bargaining unit. However, there were plenty of things we couldn’t achieve in those negotiations, and a number of issues we won in our contract that will still take work to successfully implement.

In Your Departments
Many of our new contract victories, like workload protections, rely on shared governance to implement. Our Shared Governance committee will be spearheading the effort to inform and encourage our members to take advantage of those victories by using their powers of shared governance to the maximum potential.

In the Senate
As we reported in a previous weekly update, we have a newly formed Senate Caucus that will be discuss many of the issues our members are experiencing that have their roots in university statutes. The Senate is by most measures the strongest expression of shared governance at the university, with the purview to recommend changes to the statutes. The new Caucus was formed simply to keep our many members in the Senate informed about issues affecting faculty, and the current list is a long one. Among the top items on the agenda are granting longer term contracts (currently capped at 3 years for NTT), strengthening academic freedom protections, and addressing problematic changes to mandatory RNUA documentation.

At the Board Meetings
Our newly formed advocacy committee (look out for a profile of them in future updates), will be looking into how the university system is governed, and how we can ensure fair and just treatment for UIC within that system. In particular, funding models remain opaque, and seemingly lopsided in favor of programs in Urbana, even as UIC tends to work with students who have the greatest need for resources and support.

In the Legislature
UIC faculty are surely no strangers to how structural issues in the state legislature can affect how we work and how our students learn. UICUF isn’t helpless in this arena though. We have established a Committee on Political Education (COPE), which is addressing issues in the legislature, and lets members volunteer to pool resources in support of political campaigns that may affect UIC in the future. First on their to-do list is to get parity in treatment for our NTT faculty as compared with state college faculty, who enjoy more timely reappointment notices, and receive reasons for non-reappointment.

As you can see, even though the big contract push is over, there’s no shortage of ways we can continue to move the needle, making UIC an even better place to work and learn!

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We issue regular updates via email, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and on our website. We encourage everyone to like and follow us on social media. If you want to contribute your story, pictures, video, or other content related to the activities of the union, email us at UICUnitedFaculty@gmail.com. With your support, we are making UIC an even better place to work and learn!

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26 Sep Want More Job Security for NTT faculty – Support UICUF COPE

Know Your Contract Training
Student Center West, Room 206AB, 12-1:30pm, Mon, 9/30

Fall Member Meeting
Jane Addams Hull House, 3-5pm, Wed, 10/2

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  • COPE is UICUF’s Committee on Political Education. It allows us to collect and spend money on political campaigns, make endorsements, and engage in the political process
  • COPE’s primary role is to manage political contributions collected from our members, and educate students, faculty and the public on political issues that affect faculty
  • Faculty can get involved by becoming a contributor, or by emailing Kate Floros, COPE Chair. COPE is currently looking for strong communicators with graphic design skills
  • Union dues never go toward paying for political activities

 

This week we are exploring the role of the UICUF Committee on Political Education (UICUF COPE) in supporting faculty by giving us a voice in the state political processes that affect our university.

How Will COPE Improve Working/Learning Conditions at UIC?

  1. The COPE will work with other unions representing faculty in Illinois, and allies in the state legislature to create or expand laws impacting faculty rights. First and foremost, we hope to bring state laws regarding reappointment notifications for our NTT faculty in line with existing legislation governing faculty at community colleges. Should this effort succeed, NTT faculty would receive notification of non-reappointment months earlier than they currently do, and they would have the right to receive a written explanation for the non-reappointment.
  2. The COPE will bring faculty issues into focus with our union allies and affiliates. The COPE was successful in getting a resolution placed on the agenda of the Illinois Federation of Teachers (IFT) convention, which, if passed, would commit the IFT to working toward passage of legislation like what is described above.
  3. The COPE intends to make its first-ever endorsements and/or contributions to a political campaign that has bearing on the health of our university ahead of the March 2020 Illinois primary elections.

 

What Is the COPE and What Else Does It Do?
The COPE has the same legal profile as a Political Action Committee, legally separate and distinct from UICUF. The distinction allows UICUF members to pool their funds/influence for endorsements and support of political/election campaigns which our union can’t otherwise participate in. This offers our members peace-of-mind knowing that union dues aren’t being used for politics, while also allowing politically-minded members a way to unite and support politicians and/or legislation important to university working conditions. The COPE is primarily focused on state and local issues and candidates, in order to most directly affect legislation related to higher education policy in Illinois.

The COPE’s other, equally important role is to educate students, faculty, and the public on faculty issues and working conditions. The committee is currently doing student outreach, and crafting a “UIC 101” one-sheet to help students understand how UIC as an institution is organized, its place within the University of Illinois System, and its status as a public research institution. There will be other educational materials about the student cost of attendance and the UIC budget later this academic year.

 

How Can Faculty Get Involved?
Faculty can get involved in the COPE initially by becoming a contributor. Union members (who are US citizens or permanent residents) can download a contribution form from our website and return it to kate.floros@gmail.com. Contributions are generally made through payroll deduction, but can be accepted in the form of a check if preferred. The COPE team strongly encourages faculty to consider becoming contributors, even if you can only afford a few dollars a month!

In the spirit of inclusiveness, each year, the COPE leadership team hosts a meeting where contributors are encouraged to help articulate COPE priorities. Additionally, the COPE team will reach out to contributors in advance of the March 17, 2020 primary election, before endorsements and/or donations are made, to elicit feedback on COPE’s endorsement plans. There are also monthly board meetings open to contributors (email Kate if you want to know the place and time of the next meeting). Lastly, some board seats become available every year, and any contributor is eligible to become a member of the board.

We hope you will take a moment to become a contributor, and get involved with our Committee on Political Education!

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We issue regular updates via email, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and on our website. We encourage everyone to like and follow us on social media. If you want to contribute your story, pictures, video, or other content related to the activities of the union, email us at UICUnitedFaculty@gmail.com. With your support, we are making UIC an even better place to work and learn!

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19 Sep The Senate Caucus – Committee Profile

**Know Your Contract Trainings Friday 9/20/19**
Applied Health Sciences Building, Room 315, 10 – 11:30 am
College of Nursing, Room 202, 12 – 1:30 pm

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  • The Senate Caucus is a newly formed effort by UICUF to inform discussion in the University Senate on issues affecting faculty
  • The group was formed in response to the administration’s position in bargaining that certain issues are more appropriately addressed by the Senate through the Statutes
  • Senators can get involved by emailing Milos Zefran. UICUF members are encouraged to run for Senate, and communicate with Senators on issues affecting them day-to-day

 

Unions are always most visible during contract negotiations, but UICUF does so much more than bargain our contract. Dedicated faculty volunteers work on a variety of committees and efforts year round to promote safe, satisfying and enriching working conditions at UIC, to deal with workplace issues, and of course, to enforce our contract.

To give our members a better idea of all the ways UICUF is working for them every day, we will be showcasing the various committees and their work throughout the Fall Semester. Each segment will introduce a new or existing UICUF committee, discuss their work and goals, and let you know how you can get involved.

Without further ado, our first feature is on the newly established Senate Caucus!

What Is The Senate Caucus And What Does It Do?
The Senate Caucus is a group of Senators who are also UICUF members, specifically dedicated to discussing and educating other Senators on issues that affect faculty in our bargaining unit. It was formed, in part, as a response to the Administration’s frequent refrain during our last contract negotiations that certain issues were outside the scope of a labor agreement, and could only be addressed by the Senate through the UI Statutes. While we don’t entirely agree with this logic, it has prompted an interest in making sure that the Senate is at least aware of these issues when they do come up.

The University Senate has always been a fulcrum of shared governance, and UICUF appreciates their independent role in defining policy in areas like curriculum and tenure. The Senate Caucus is not a political party, or a mechanism to whip votes in the Senate. It’s intention is to bring forward and educate on issues in the Senate, and to keep UICUF members informed about Senate proceedings on issues of note. We strongly encourage UICUF members to interact with your representatives, and share your own opinions on key issues.

What Is The Senate Caucus Working On Right Now?
The Senate Caucus is brand new, but it already has a long list of agenda items to address. Key points include:

 

  • Increasing the maximum length of NTT appointments
  • Improving processes for protecting academic freedom and tenure
  • Opening access to sabbaticals for NTT faculty
  • Addressing the structure and uses of student evaluations
  • Creating “Teaching” titles to replace “Lecturer” and create an associated third rank for affected faculty

 

While there is no particular order of priority for these laid out at the moment, we hope to keep members informed if and when each issue does come up. Given the long list, we anticipate the Senate Caucus will have plenty to do this year, but if you want to put forward other ideas, we again encourage our members to be in touch with their College’s Senators.

How Can Members Get Involved?
Senators who want to be a part of the Senate Caucus can contact Milos Zefran (Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering) to be invited to the Caucus listserv. The Caucus will meet in person once per semester to discuss issues.

UICUF members who are not Senators can get involved in several ways. First, we highly encourage you to run for Senate if you are able. There are seats open every year, and even some seats unclaimed at the time of this writing in certain Colleges. Of course, not everyone can commit to being a Senator. The Senate meetings themselves are open to non-Senators if you just want to drop in (see our Calendar for dates), but in most cases, the best way to interact with the Senate is to be in contact with your College’s Senators about issues that matter to you!

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We issue regular updates via email, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and on our website. We encourage everyone to like and follow us on social media. If you want to contribute your story, pictures, video, or other content related to the activities of the union, email us at UICUnitedFaculty@gmail.com. With your support, we are making UIC an even better place to work and learn!

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12 Sep Know-Your-Contract Collection

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  • UICUF is dedicated to helping faculty understand their rights under the union contract
  • Our Know-Your-Contract Series details how the contract applies to faculty’s everyday work life, and is also available via our website
  • UICUF will offer department-specific Know-Your-Contract workshops this fall. To request a workshop for your department, contact us at UICUnitedFaculty@gmail.com.

 

Over the Summer, we’ve posted a variety of updates on how the new contract affects faculty day to day. We’ve now compiled this Know-Your-Contract series under the links below so that you can easily navigate to the topics that are most important to you.

Since the contract relies on faculty knowing and asserting their rights, especially in the use of shared governance to set department policies, we will be offering Know-Your-Contract workshops on a department-by-department basis this Fall semester. Workshops can be tailored to the specific circumstances of your department, so contact us at UICUnitedFaculty@gmail.com if you would like to set one up for yourself and your colleagues.

Here is a summary of the Know-Your-Contract postings on our website:

ACADEMIC FREEDOM
One of the most important, but also hotly debated concepts in academia today, we explain specifically what our contract and the UI statutes have to say about academic freedom, how it is protected, and how we can further strengthen these important rights.

 

APPOINTMENT AND REAPPOINTMENT
Reappointments are a big deal, especially for NTT faculty. A key element of our new contract was to speed up time to muti-year appointments, and improve the notification process. Learn about your rights regarding multi-year appointments, when they should be applied, and when you are entitled to know about your appointment status each academic year.

 

DISCIPLINE AND DISMISSAL
A detailed explanation of your rights in the discipline process, including the right to union representation, expectations of due process, and what each step of that process should look like.

 

EVALUATIONS
Learn about your right to a timely, transparent, and appropriate annual evaluation, how they should be performed, how student input can and can’t be used, and what these evaluations should and should not be used for.

 

GRIEVANCES
While we hope not to have to file them often, grievances are the backbone of contract enforcement. This is the formal process by which faculty, with assistance from the union, can seek redress for breaches of the contract. Learn how the grievances work, including your rights, what you should do if you think you have cause to file, and what to expect from the process.

 

LIFE-CHANGING EVENTS
Though this set of rules is most commonly associated with a new child entering the home, it can also cover you if your family is impacted by a terminal condition or untimely death of a loved one. Learn about your rights under FMLA, and the extension of accommodations under existing UI System policy.

 

PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT FUNDS
A deep dive into Professional Development funds, including guaranteed amounts, and how to use them.

 

RAISES
Extensive information on how pay raises are determined, including the types of raises (Minimums, Merit, Compression/Equity, Promotions), the role of shared governance in deciding pay increases, use of guaranteed Professional Development funds, and how retro pay will work. Note that the university has advised that retro-pay will be distributed in October paychecks at the time of this writing.

 

TECHNOLOGY
Technology is central to the work of a modern university, and our new contract has a lot to say on the subject. Learn more about faculty rights to university provided computers, in-classroom technical support, and even a bit about the intersection between classroom tech and intellectual property rights.

 

WORK LOADS
The new contract specifies a role for shared governance in defining work loads in each department. Learn more about how those definitions should be created, what must be covered in these definitions, and how your work expectations are protected from abrupt changes mid-contract.

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We issue regular updates via email, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and on our website. We encourage everyone to like and follow us on social media. If you want to contribute your story, pictures, video, or other content related to the activities of the union, email us at UICUnitedFaculty@gmail.com. With your support, we are making UIC an even better place to work and learn!

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05 Sep Union Approval on the Rise | Local Events | Health Plan Updates

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  • Despite political attacks against organized labor, Gallup Polls put union approval at 64% this year, near it’s 50 year high!
  • UICUF’s Fall Party is tonight, Thursday, 9/5/19, 5-7pm @The Ambassador Public House! RSVP to UICUFJeff@gmail.com.
  • We are cosponsoring a Panel/workshop, Why Teacher Unions Matter, next Wednesday, 9/11/19, 6-8pm at the Chicago Teachers Union offices. Free registration via eventbrite.
  • Per recent communications to university employees, health plan changes originally scheduled to go into effect in January 1, 2020, will be postponed til July 1, 2020.

 

Union Approval is Way Up!
Public approval of unions jumped to 64% this year according to Gallup Polls, putting it near its 50-year. Most commentators point to a confluence of persistently depressed wages, and the mass wave of mostly educator-led strikes over the last year, which are proving that organized labor can win on major issues. For many workers, incomes have been almost flat versus inflation since the 70’s, but seeing workplace activism rise to the dizzying heights of challenging not only local conditions, but entire state budgets, has been a shock to the system. Especially for young workers who have no experience with an active labor movement, seeing organized labor winning high profile victories across the country has renewed a belief that unions can make a difference.

Fall Party Tonight
All members are encouraged to attend the Fall Party tonight at Ambassador Public House from 5-7pm. Get to know your colleagues a little better, or bring a new colleague and introduce them to the union. Non-members can join on the spot. Appetizers provided by the union, and cash bar available. RSVP to UICUFJeff@gmail.com.

Unions For Teachers – Why They Matter
We are cosponsoring an event with the Chicago Teachers Union and others, called Unions for Teachers: Why They Matter. It is an interactive workshop aimed primarily at future teachers to explore all the questions this group might have about labor and education. The event will include a panel of Chicago area educators, table discussions, and more! Plus food! The event is free to attend, so join us at the CTU Office from 6-8pm on September 11, and share with anyone who is new to education or studying to become a teacher. You can RSVP via Eventbright.

Health Plan Updates
In case you missed it, the UI system will be postponing planned changes to your health plans that were set to go into effect Jan. 1, 2020. The planned special enrollment period to allow faculty to change their health coverage has, therefore, also been postponed. The changes will now go into effect on July 1, 2020, at the beginning of the new fiscal year. Visit our website to find our review of the changes to university health plans in greater detail.

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We issue regular updates via email, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and on our website. We encourage everyone to like and follow us on social media. If you want to contribute your story, pictures, video, or other content related to the activities of the union, email us at UICUnitedFaculty@gmail.com. With your support, we are making UIC an even better place to work and learn!

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