Some arguments against union

3/21/2012: Dan Dugger in math sends me a link to his webpage of arguments against the union, his full post is here. The union’s own page is here. Professor Dugger’s points include:

  • The United Academics union has acted in a way that does not inspire confidence.
  • The union claims to support faculty desire for greater “transparency” from the administration, but the union has itself not behaved in a transparent manner.
  • The interests of tenure-track faculty and non-tenure-track faculty are too inconsistent for these units to belong to a common union.
  • Unionization of college campuses is something this country has very little experience with; therefore, we should move very carefully and gives ourselves a way out if things don’t go well.
  • Unions are built on the power of the collective. However, there is also power in individualism, and this should not be ignored or undermined.
  • The full cost to the faculty of having a union has not been discussed.
  • Unions bargain by using the weapon of strikes; but on a campus, strikes hurt more than the administration—they hurt the students.
  • The way unions work runs in many ways opposite to the best interests of a research university.

"Faculty input not respected"

Gordon Sayre from English, quoted on the reasons for the UO faculty union victory in IHE: The story also explains that “The university has until April 4 to object to the petition for unionization, according to an official at the Employment Relations Board.” and that

Robert Berdahl, interim president at the university, said in an e-mail that the university was notified Wednesday that the authorization cards have been submitted. “The university has not had an opportunity to review the petition for certification yet and it is premature to comment further,” the e-mail said.

Union reports majority of TT faculty signed

3/13/2012: From the United Academics Faculty Union website:

We are VERY pleased to announce that on Tuesday March 13, United Academics filed union authorization cards – signed by a clear majority of UO tenure-track, non-tenure-track, and research faculty – with the state Employment Relations Board (ERB). 

 This is an important milestone and moves us one key step closer to forming our union and restoring a strong faculty voice in the future of the UO.  Our union will be formally certified once the Board confirms that the signed cards do indeed represent a majority.

United Academics includes tenure-track faculty, non-tenure-track faculty, and research faculty.  In addition to the solid overall majority, the union authorization cards we presented to the state ERB included majorities in each of the classifications of faculty represented. (emphasis added).

I think this lays to rest a lot of concerns. There are still hoops to jump through but no one seems to think they are major.

So, the immediate questions that come to mind are how will elections for union representatives be set up, bylaws written, dues, etc. Anyone know?