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Accuracy • Independence • Integrity

August 23, 2017   |   Ithaca, NY

News

Ithaca College releases statement regarding potential unionization

Ithaca College has released a statement regarding the potential unionization of part-time faculty members.

On April 15, the Ithaca College part-time faculty filed a petition with the National Labor Relations Board to unionize.

The statement, released on Intercom on behalf of President Tom Rochon and Linda Petrosino, interim provost and vice president for educational affairs, says the college is neither pro-union nor anti-union. The statement goes on to say the college would prefer to have a “direct working relationship” with part-time faculty.

The website has four sections, which includes the college’s statement, frequently asked questions, additional resources and a section titled “Part-Time Faculty Compensation.”

Below is the full statement released by the college.

We are writing to the campus community to share important information involving our part-time and adjunct faculty. 

The College has received a petition from the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), filed by the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), seeking to establish a bargaining unit of our part-time and adjunct faculty members at our main campus.  The NLRB will proceed to schedule a mail ballot election in which all eligible employees will have the opportunity to vote on whether or not they wish to become dues-paying members of the SEIU.  We will update you with the election details once they are finalized by the NLRB.

We’d like to be very clear about the College’s position on this matter.  Ithaca College is neither “anti-union” nor “pro-union.”  We respect the right of our part-time and adjunct faculty to make their own choice by way of a democratic secret ballot election.  We strongly encourage each member of the voting group to consider this issue very carefully, listen to all viewpoints, gather relevant information, and reach your own personal conclusion.  

Although it is not our decision, from the College’s perspective as an employer, we would prefer to maintain a direct working relationship with each member of the part-time and adjunct faculty. As we seek to do with all of our employees, we would like our relationship to be based on open communications, flexibility and individualized treatment, mutual respect, and a spirit of collegiality. 

We are committed to a respectful and factual dialogue over this issue.  We will continue to work to ensure a fair, open, and thoughtful discourse throughout the communication and election process with minimal disruption to our academic mission.  To that end, we have created an informational website with links to a variety of helpful documents and factual information at www.ithaca.edu/unionchoice

We encourage all members of the College community to access the site and obtain pertinent information.  As always, feel free to speak with your Deans, Department Chairs, Program Chairs, and/or any member of administration about this or any other issue.  

We will keep you posted on this very important issue as we proceed.

Max Denning can be reached at mdenning@ithaca.edu or via Twitter: @TheMaxDenning