BOSTON, MA – For the first time in the Commonwealth’s history, thousands of faculty members at institutions of higher education will be able to care for themselves or a sick loved one without fear of repercussions from their employer. According to new regulations issued by Attorney General Maura Healey, [see Section 33.03(7)(a), final regs], educators will join workers throughout Massachusetts in gaining access to earned sick time beginning today.
“On multiple occasions, I’ve been forced to take my sick child to work with me when she was too ill to be at her own school. I didn’t feel I could cancel my class,” said Bayla Ostrach, PhD, an Assistant Professor in the Department of Family Medicine at Boston University. “I am relieved to think that I can now stay home, with no repercussions, when my child or I are contagious.”
Nearly two-dozen core faculty members attended our inaugural meetings to discuss the collective bargaining process and begin to work together to prepare for negotiations – which will begin in the Fall 2015 Semester.
The tone and content of the meetings was collegial and positive, and we agreed to schedule follow-up meetings for next week, (details below).
Union Contract Planning Session
Thursday, June 11 – 11:00am or 4:30pm
U-Hall, Room 2-048
If you cannot attend this session, but still want to be involved, please contact Zev Nicholson.
Below is a brief summary of our meeting(s) and agreed-upon next steps: Continue Reading…
With this historic vote, we join our adjunct colleagues in securing a stronger faculty voice at Lesley – one that will no doubt secure a brighter future for our university.
The journey here has no doubt been a learning experience. Many of us have been introduced to colleagues who were previously unfamiliar. We’ve discussed the many positive aspects of our jobs as educators and studied what we feel needs to be improved upon. Now that we have formed our union, the time has come to look forward to the positive changes this will bring to core faculty and our students.
We are the Union – that is, all of us striving together. So, as we move forward, we want to include as many voices as possible in our conversations with the Lesley administration. We have scheduled our first contract planning sessions for next Thursday, May 28, at which we will start to define both our immediate and long-range goals (details below). Continue Reading…
BOSTON – Full-time ‘Core’ faculty at Lesley University voted “Union Yes” today, with nearly 60% casting their ballots to join Faculty Forward – a project of Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 509. The vote marks the fifth faculty union victory in as many months, with more than 3,000 Boston-area educators now joined in a shared effort to improve their profession and the overall quality of higher education through unionization. Lesley adjunct faculty voted to join FacultyForward/SEIU in February 2014.
“Today’s vote represents an opportunity for real change at Lesley – to make our university a better place to teach and learn,” said Dalia Llera, who has taught Counseling and Psychology for more than two decades at Lesley. “Together with our adjunct colleagues, we will finally be able to pursue the classroom investments we know are so important to the learning experience.”
In the pages above, you will see some of the faces of our union of core faculty at Lesley University. You will read — in our own words — why so many of us support our union, and why we ask you to join us by voting “union YES” in the coming days.
There are many reasons to vote YES: a greater voice in decision-making, employment security, greater transparency, a more equitable workload, pay parity, professional development, and more. You have your own reasons, too. But we all share a passion for teaching and a deep desire to make Lesley University a great place for core faculty to work — and for our students to learn.
Together with our adjunct colleagues and Department Chairs and Division Director/Leader allies, we will bring the focus back to the university’s core mission — to teaching and the classroom. Our combined efforts will bring added value to Lesley to ensure a more prosperous future, as evidenced by the collective achievements in our adjunct colleagues’ tentative contract agreement.
As you read through this booklet, you will see names and faces from all four Lesley schools and the Threshold Program. Some voices will be familiar, some will be new, but they are saying what many of us have often thought: that it is time for core faculty to have stronger voice at Lesley. Our collective voice will not replace Faculty Assembly or other key university structures, but will serve to bolster our system of shared governance through a collaborative and productive collective bargaining process.
Add your voice to ours, stand with your colleagues all across our University and vote “YES” for our union and a brighter future for Lesley University.
The Lesley Core Faculty Union Organizing Committee
We write with wonderful news! After receiving our petition in the form of union authorization cards, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has scheduled our election for May.
Our union election will be held by mail, with ballots tentatively set to arrive beginning May 6. We will have approximately two weeks to make a decision and return our ballots to the NLRB.
In addition, NLRB authorities have ruled that all core faculty — including those recently designated as ‘temporary’ — have the right to vote in this election. Read more on this ruling and the voice it guarantees our colleagues in The Chronicle of Higher Education.
-A Message from the Lesley Core Faculty Union Organizing Committee-
Lesley University’s mission emphasizes key social justice values.
Which raises a question: Given that labor unions have a long history of standing up for those very same values, why is it difficult for the Lesley administration and some members of our core faculty community to embrace the arrival of a core faculty union?
With the overwhelming support of colleagues throughout the LesleyCommunity, we were able to petition the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) — and we have won the right to vote to form a Core Faculty Union on campus! We’ve taken our time over the last year to discuss and make informed decisions on how to make key improvements in our university, and our objective is now in sight.
We anticipate the Boston Office of the NLRB to schedule a union election soon — likely to be held in early May. There is a tentative agreement to hold the election by mail-in ballot to ensure maximum participation in the vote. It is our hope and expectation that all Core Faculty will be able to consider the issues and cast our legally-protected votes without interference from Lesley administrators.