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UI challenges NTTF’s in faculty union

5/19/2011: Here’s a bit of highly relevant news for the UO faculty union movement, from

Faculty members at the University of Illinois at Chicago filed for union recognition last month — moving to become one of a small number of research universities to seek collective bargaining for professors, and giving academic labor a major victory in a year of deep disappointments. While the university urged faculty members to reject the union drive, it did not challenge the professors’ legal right to organize.

Now, however, the University of Illinois system is challenging the union — jointly organized by the American Association of University Professors and the American Federation of Teachers — on the grounds that state law bars tenure-track and non-tenure-track faculty from being in the same organizing unit. The union is fighting back, and faculty leaders say that the argument is a cover for the university’s opposition to collective bargaining for faculty members.

The UO union organizers have argued not just for including full-time long term NTTF’s in the union (good, in my view) but also for giving part-timers full votes (bad – very different interests). If they win their card check – probably in the fall – Oregon could make a similar challenge.

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