At a time when he has vehemently opposed the Republican tax bill that would devastate New York’s working families and attack universities and students, Governor Cuomo has chosen to veto legislation that would have stabilized funding for New York’s public universities. What a missed opportunity! With a signature instead of a veto, the Governor could have shown CUNY and SUNY students that their education is worthy of stable State support. He could have shown the nation that New York is willing to invest in the top-rate public college education that working people need in an economy that is being increasingly rigged for corporations and the ultra-rich.
The union has criticized a School of Professional Studies governance plan that would cut out faculty input. It could be a model for other schools.
Message from President Bowen
I'm delighted to announce that the PSC has achieved an agreement with CUNY to implement a permanent reduction in the full-time faculty teaching load, to be phased in starting next fall. By Fall 2020 the contractual teaching load for professors, associate professors and assistant professors at the senior colleges will be 18 hours; and the contractual teaching load for professors, associate professors and assistant professors at the community colleges, as well as for instructors and lectures, will be 24 hours. The joint announcement is below.
This is a historic achievement for the union and a major gain for CUNY and our students. It was possible only because the union insisted that we would not sign the last contract without a conceptual agreement and because union members organized and stayed strong in support. Congratulations to the many, many people who were part of making this happen.
Details will follow next week; we are just signing the agreement today. Congratulations, PSC members!
CUNY AND PSC REACH AGREEMENT ON TEACHING WORKLOAD
The City University of New York and Professional Staff Congress have reached agreement on a restructuring of the workload of full-time teaching faculty that will enable professors to devote more time to individual work with students, to advising, holding office hours, conducting academic research and engaging in other activities that contribute to student success.
The agreement reduces the annual contractual undergraduate teaching workload by three credit hours and will be phased in over three years, one credit hour a year, starting with the 2018-19 academic year. The agreement covers both the senior and community colleges of CUNY and all full-time classroom teaching faculty.
As Mother Jones said, "Don't mourn organize." We're continuing to resist the implementation of the GOP's dangerous tax plan during the Senate and House reconciliation process over the next two weeks. Join us. Send this message to your representatives in Congress.
A Message from President Bowen
Once every 20 years, New York State voters face the question of whether the state should hold a Constitutional Convention. This is the year. On the back of your ballot on Election Day next week will be Proposition 1: “Shall there be a convention to revise the Constitution and amend same?” I am voting “NO.” I urge you to do the same.
The PSC strongly opposes holding a Constitutional Convention (popularly called a “Con Con”). We are part of a large coalition opposing the Con Con, together with the Sierra Club, the Council of Churches, AFL-CIO, Planned Parenthood, NYSUT and scores of other groups.
CUNY’s Catastrophic Sick Leave Bank is a pool of voluntarily donated sick leave and annual leave available for potential use as sick leave by all full-time employees at CUNY (instructional and classified) who are also donors to the bank. The Catastrophic Sick Leave Bank, which arose out of a PSC contract campaign, exemplifies worker solidarity and mutual support. It gives CUNY workers a way to offer aid to colleagues dealing with a catastrophic illness and provides a place to turn for help if they face a similar need. The open enrollment period for the Catastrophic Sick Leave Bank will be held from October 1 to October 31. Workers must donate leave in a program year to be eligible to receive leave in that year (up to 90 days). Click here for program requirements and to learn how to donate and receive leave from the bank.
Nationwide, academics are concerned about the rise of “fake” academic journals targeting professors. PSC members are taking note.
"Right-to-work" laws, bolstered by anti-Semitic ideas of a Jewish conspiracy, originated in the South as a way to maintain Jim Crow labor relations.
The Professional Staff Congress/CUNY rejects the statement by Michael Isaacson about imagining his students dead. Isaacson’s statement is anathema to the teaching profession. It in no way represents the position of the PSC as a union or the tens of thousands of CUNY faculty—both full-time faculty and adjuncts—who choose to work at CUNY because of a profound commitment to the diverse and largely working-class students we are privileged to teach. But the right of free speech protects even repugnant speech, and every worker should be entitled to due process. The PSC will vigorously defend the due-process rights of every CUNY employee - both full time and part-time - we represent.
NYC Primary Results
Mayor de Blasio and Public Advocate Letitia James won their primary races by definitive margins.
Four of the six PSC-endorsed candidates in open City Council races won. They are Carlina Rivera (CD2), Diana Ayala (CD 8), Alicka Ampry-Samuel (CD 41) and Justin Brannan (CD 43). Two lost. Marjorie Velazquez, PSC’s candidate for Council District 13, lost a close race to Mark Gjonaj. Marti Speranza, PSC’s candidate for Council District 4, lost to Keith Powers.
For results of all the NYC primary elections, see the New York Times coverage.
Turn-out for this election was a near record low with only 14% of voters eligible participating. But PSC members turned out. Many thanks to the Legislative Committee members who volunteered to help turn their colleagues out to the polls. Our phone banking worked!