NEW YORK, March 21, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Non-tenure track faculty who have been advocating for more investment in students and instruction at Fordham University filed with the National Labor Relations Board for a union election to join the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 200United as part of the national Faculty Forward campaign to raise standards in higher education.
More than half of Fordham faculty are off the tenure track. The trend follows a national crisis in higher education that has led to broad concern over issues like the marginalization of teaching, academic isolation, and job stability which in turn affects student learning conditions.
"Fordham is a prestigious university, yet more than half the faculty have very little job security and adjuncts have no benefits at all," said Chris Brandt, an Adjunct Professor in Communications and Media Studies. "Prestige is no substitute for a living wage. Faculty need a voice to advocate for better working conditions, which is why we are forming our union. We need to make investment in instruction—and in students—a priority again."
Fordham faculty are continuing to build support while taking an important step towards a vote to join colleagues at Duke, the University of Chicago, Brandeis, Tufts, Georgetown, and dozens of other universities who have joined SEIU in the past three years.
"I am excited that we are moving forward by filing for our union election," Hannah Jopling, Adjunct Professor of Sociology and Anthropology, said. "I believe that the only way we can remedy the social injustice at Fordham – namely its exploitation of contingent faculty – is to form a union. With a voice in determining these work conditions, we can build a better Fordham."
Together, faculty from coast to coast are building support to form their union with SEIU, and creating a movement to address the crisis in higher education and the declining standards that endanger the profession.
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SOURCE Service Employees International Union