Mass Contract Campaign Meeting
Governor Cuomo is Failing CUNY Student
Union Makes a Counter Offer to CUNY
Members Organize for a Strike Authorization Vote
Hundreds of CUNY faculty and staff packed the historic Great Hall at Cooper Union, calling on the Governor to end his refusal to invest in quality education for CUNY students and a fair contract for CUNY workers. The call came at a Nov. 19 mass meeting where PSC leaders detailed a contract counter offer presented to CUNY earlier that day and union members solidified plans for a strike authorization vote.
Read more. CUNY's unacceptable offer
The proposal CUNY management made on Wednesday falls far short of what is needed to pay us decently for the important work we do. It also fails to provide the investment needed to protect high-quality education at CUNY. Our last raise was in October 2009, and our contract expired in 2010. Here is Chancellor Milliken's economic proposal: 2010: 0%, 2011:0%, 2012: 0%, 2013: 0%, 2014: 1% (on April 20), 2015: 1% (on April 20), 2016: 3% (on April 20), 1% (on October 19)
The total, before compounding, is 6% over 6 years. That means a salary "increase" below the level of inflation-in other words, a salary cut.
Read President Bowen's message. Faculty and Staff Blockade Doors to CUNY Central, Demand Fair Contract to Protect Quality Education
Fifty three CUNY faculty and professional staff were arrested on Wednesday, November 4 demanding a contract that will help CUNY retain excellent professors, ensuring a quality education for the 500,000 CUNY students across the city. They blocked the doors to the midtown office building housing CUNY’s central administration and refused to move until the university management made a fair offer to resolve their long-expired union contract. 800 faculty, staff, students and supporters rallied to support them. Media Coverage
Online & Print
Radio Planned Strike Authorization Vote
A strike authorization vote—even though it is not a vote to strike—is a significant escalation of our campaign, and we want to ensure that you have ample time to prepare for it. There will be several months of preparation before the vote is taken. The union’s mass meeting on November 19 will offer an opportunity to discuss and plan for the vote. If you want to be part of preparing for the vote, let us know
here. Read more. Demands
Demands for the new contract were approved at a November 4, 2010 Delegate Assembly meeting. The full text of the demands, and coverage of the DA, are available
here as a special supplement of the December 2010 Clarion. Agreements
More in This Section
At the packed PSC Mass Meeting held Thursday, November 19, President Bowen announced that polling on the strike authorization will begin when the spring semester has started on all campuses, after the first week of March. Time to organize.
Will you make a commitment to help?
Updated: November 30, 2015
Governor Cuomo is Failing CUNY Students
CUNY Union Questions Cuomo's Progressive Credentials.” That was the PoliticoNY headline the day after nearly 1,000 faculty and staff packed the Great Hall at Cooper Union for a mass meeting Thurs., Nov. 19. At the meeting, President Bowen laid the failure to resolve the PSC-CUNY contract at Governor Cuomo’s feet, saying: “Governor Cuomo cannot call himself a progressive if he is not progressive on CUNY, if he is not willing to make a real investment in the education of the low-income working people, people of color, and immigrants whom CUNY serves… Failure to invest in CUNY faculty and staff represents a political decision not to invest in the people we teach.”
Bowen also laid out a five-point strategy for winning a fair contract and announced the union’s counter offer. The strategy includes: 1) naming Governor Cuomo’s responsibility for not funding our contract and demanding that he change his position; 2) enlarging our fight by involving more allies; 3) amplifying our message through increasingly aggressive media and social media campaigns; 4) making a counter-proposal to CUNY’s below-inflation offer; 5) getting organized to use our full power, if necessary, by building for a strike authorization vote. The PSC counter-offer calls for increases of a total of 14% over 6 years and includes other proposals to enhance the quality of students’ education, including allowing faculty more time with individual students and establishing employment continuity for adjunct instructors.
Updated: November 24, 2015
More than 40,000 students are urging Governor Cuomo to sign the bi-partisan Maintenance of Effort bill, legislation to protect educational quality at CUNY and SUNY. Postcards signed by the students were delivered to the governor’s office on Friday, November 20 by a coalition of groups, including the PSC, CUNY University Student Senate (USS) and the New York Public Interest Research Group (NYPIRG). Students and faculty leaders also held a press conference.
Updated: November 16, 2015
It took five years, multiple protests, the announcement of a strike authorization vote, and a sit-in to get the CUNY Administration to move, but they finally put an offer on the table at Wednesday's bargaining session-as PSC members assembled for a demonstration on the street below and prepared to risk arrest. Collective action works.
But we must keep the pressure on. The proposal CUNY management made on Wednesday falls far short of what is needed to pay us decently for the important work we do. It also fails to provide the investment needed to protect high-quality education at CUNY. Our last raise was in October 2009, and our contract expired in 2010. Here is Chancellor Milliken's economic proposal:
Updated: November 23, 2015
Faculty at the CUNY Graduate Center are reinforcing the union-wide campaign for a fair contract with some impressive local organizing. Click
here to read a letter to Chancellor Milliken signed by 111 central line faculty at the Graduate Center. The letter says all of CUNY is at a crossroads because of the lack of state funding and an equitable contract. It urges the chancellor to “stand for excellence at CUNY by fighting for adequate state funding for the University and by offering its employees a fair and equitable contract.”
Updated: November 5, 2015
A Message from President Bowen, October 28
The union promised to escalate our campaign until we win a fair contract-we cannot stop now.
There is still no offer on the table, despite the increased attention our contract has received in Albany, City Hall and CUNY's corporate offices as a result of our October 1st demonstration and the announcement of a strike authorization vote. We need to turn up the heat again.
Updated: October 26, 2015
CUNY STUDENTS, FACULTY AND STAFF DEMAND
TUITION FREEZE AND A UNION CONTRACT
CUNY students, faculty and staff demanded a tuition freeze and a new union contract at a rally October 22, 2015 at the College of Staten Island (CSI). Tuition at CUNY has increased by $1,500 in the past five years. Over the same period, 2,300 CSI employees have been working without a union contract or a pay raise.
Updated: October 20, 2015
Help Get 100,000 Students to Urge the Governor to Sign the MOE Bill
The PSC is working closely with the New York Public Interest Research Group (NYPIRG), New York State United Teachers (NYSUT) and United University Professions (UUP) to collect 100,000 postcards signed by CUNY and SUNY students in support of the Maintenance of Effort (MOE) bill (S281a/A5370a). The MOE bill was passed by the Legislature last June and is awaiting the governor’s signature. Our goal is to get 40,000 cards signed by CUNY students. Contact
your chapter chair to get involved in the campaign, and make sure any signed cards that you collect get returned to your chapter leaders. The coalition will deliver the postcards to the governor's office at a public event in late November, so we need to keep track of every one of them.
Updated: October 16, 2015
PSC members came out by the hundreds on the morning of Thursday, October 1 to demand that Chancellor Milliken take action now to settle the contract. Including students and members of other city unions who turned out in solidarity, close to 1,000 people joined the protest.
Updated: October 20, 2015
A message from President Barbara Bowen
Dear PSC Members,
At the union’s Delegate Assembly on October 15, I announced on behalf of the Executive Council that the PSC plans to hold a strike authorization vote.
A strike authorization vote—even though it is not a vote to strike—is a significant escalation of our campaign, and we want to ensure that you have ample time to prepare for it. There will be several months of preparation before the vote is taken. The union’s mass meeting on November 19 will offer an opportunity to discuss and plan for the vote. If you want to be part of preparing for the vote, let us know here.
Updated: October 28, 2015
#TeachCUNY and Other Local Actions
Over 100 faculty and students turned out to connect the dots between CUNY funding, student tuition and the PSC contract at the BMCC chapter’s #TeachCUNY event last week. Another 100 faculty and students rallied for a fair contract and a tuition freeze at the College of Staten Island. The LaGuardia Community College PSC chapter is holding #TeachCUNY sessions throughout the day on Tuesday, October 27, with panels from 10:30 AM-3:15 PM. Chapters at Bronx Community College and Hostos Community College also have teach ins this week. More actions are scheduled at Guttman Community College and John Jay College next week. Faculty members throughout CUNY are also finding pedagogically appropriate ways to make CUNY funding and the contract part of classroom learning. Click "read more" for a sample curriculum, a Power Point presentation and other resources. Contact
your chapter chair and visit the PSC calendar to learn about events being planned for your campus.
Updated: October 8, 2015
In #5words, #TellJB Why #CUNYNeedsARaise
News of the Wake Up Call reached more than 38,000 readers through the
PSC’s Facebook page and thousands more through Twitter. If you use social media, be sure to follow the PSC on Twitter and Facebook. Join the campaign by sending a five-word message to Chancellor Milliken (@jbmilliken, facebook.com/jb.milliken) about how his failure to resolve the PSC/CUNY contract hurts you and/or your students. Some messages shared by PSC members: “Support us to support students,” HEOs & CLTs deserve professional respect,” “Brooklyn College is Broklyn College.” What are your #5words? Not On Social Media?
twitter.com and type these hashtags into the search bar to see what the fuss is about: #CUNYneedsaraise and #CUNYcontractnow.
Updated: October 1, 2015
A Message From PSC President Barbara Bowen
This Thursday, October 1, the PSC and allies from across the city will be delivering a wake-up call to Chancellor Milliken. Why? Because Milliken needs to wake up to the urgency we are experiencing after six years without a raise. We are taking the message to where he lives in order to make the need for a new contract as real to Milliken as it is to us. Will you be with us?
Click here to say yes.
Milliken accepted the position of chancellor and the big salary and apartment that go with it. He is ultimately responsible for putting money on the table for our contract. It’s true that he has spoken up in Albany and made efforts to resolve the issue of State funding. Making an effort is good, but it is not enough. We need results.
As chancellor, Milliken has not offered the vision or strategy needed to resolve the difficult political situation in Albany he inherited. He has not effectively challenged the economic austerity agenda for CUNY.
Updated: November 5, 2015
h2>No Contract for Five Years. No Raises for Six Years. No More Excuses, Chancellor Milliken!
THE PLAN FOR THE FALL:
September: PSC union meeting on your campus: check overleaf for time and place. Come to be part of shaping the campaign on your campus.
October 1: Wake-up Call for Chancellor Milliken—
demonstration at Milliken’s expensive Manhattan apartment on the morning of the first CUNY Board meeting of the year.
Updated: August 27, 2015
August 27, 2015
Dear PSC Members,
Today is the first day of the new academic year at most CUNY colleges, and I'm sure you are eager to hear whether there has been progress on the contract. The news is not good: after more than a year in office, Chancellor Milliken has failed to offer a single dollar for raises or back-pay. He appears to be content to allow the CUNY faculty and staff to go six years without a raise—while collecting a $670,000 salary himself. We have all been patient long enough. Starting on this first day of the new academic year, the union will accept no more excuses.
The union's executive council has spent the summer building alliances and developing a plan to create enough pressure to force a resolution on our contract. At the same time, the PSC has been pressing the Cuomo Administration to provide the necessary funding. We have planned an escalating series of actions that begins with emergency campus meetings, includes a demonstration at Milliken's apartment, and builds toward a mass public disruption later in the fall. If the contract is still not resolved, we are prepared to escalate further.... Read the full letter
Updated: August 26, 2015
No contract for five years. No raises for six.
No more excuses!
A new level of resistance starts now.
The faculty and staff at CUNY are tired of excuses. Yes, Chancellor Milliken was new last year. And yes, until this summer contracts for other public employees in New York City were still being settled.
But now the PSC, the union of CUNY faculty and staff, is practically the only union of public employees in New York State without a contract and without a raise since 2009.
Thank you, PSC members! The
bill on future funding for CUNY passed in the NYS Senate the evening of June 18. There is no doubt that the reason it moved out of committee and onto the Senate floor for a full vote was that the PSC, together with our allies, gave it a strong final push. You sent 6,407 messages to the Senate just in the past six days.
Lawmakers are speaking out in support of CUNY faculty and staff because they understand that five years without a raise hurts CUNY students.
The PSC’s new series of radio ads supporting the contract campaign expands this week to networks in New York City and Albany. Two new alumni are featured as well. A teacher, an IT expert, a medical student, a PhD student and a veterinary technician, speak in the ads about the professors who mentored them. “CUNY professors help New Yorkers reinvent their lives,” the ads say. “The next generation deserves the same opportunity. It won’t be there unless Albany invests in the City University of New York.” Listen below.
A message from President Barbara Bowen
May 20, 2015
At the contract negotiating session last week, the union presented an economic
proposal for annual salary increases.
Five years without a contractual raise and four without a contract is absurd, insulting and destructive. CUNY management’s failure to deliver on a contract hurts CUNY students, too, by damaging the University’s competitiveness and stalling progress on changes that would protect the quality of education. We may need the whole community in this fight; it’s time to take our message directly to students.
Hundreds of PSC members turned out Tuesday, March 31 for a rainy but spirited protest outside Hunter College to demand that CUNY management must stop stalling at the bargaining table.
Funding for our contract may depend on budget negotiations taking place right now in Albany. We all need to send letters! Click
here to send yours.
PSC officers were in Albany again Thursday, March 19 urging legislators to fund retroactive pay increases for PSC members.
CUNY is a national leader in community college education—but the professors and advisors of CUNY are being denied a fair union contract. That's the message of the latest PSC radio ad, which is airing this week in the Capital District and New York City.
Dozens of CUNY faculty and staff turned out to leaflet and testify about the PSC’s contract demands at a CUNY Board of Trustees hearing held at Brooklyn Borough Hall last night (Feb. 17).
PSC President Barbara Bowen and CUNY Chancellor J.B. Milliken both testified about the need for Albany to fund a PSC-CUNY Contract with retroactive raises at a State budget hearing held yesterday in Albany.
Hundreds of CUNY faculty and staff took part yesterday in the PSC’s Virtual Mass Action to press Chancellor Milliken and the Board of Trustees for a fair economic offer.
Add Your Name by the Feb. 17 Deadline
Last fall thousands of CUNY faculty and staff signed the
contract petition to demand action on our contract by the City and State.
The University Budget Must Fund a Fair Contract
Chancellor Milliken and the CUNY Board of Trustees heard from 30 rank-and-file union members and officers at the Board’s annual budget hearing at Baruch College on November 24, 2014.
CUNY contracts are negotiated at the bargaining table, but won on the ground. And we need to keep up the pressure on CUNY and the State and City officials who approve our contracts. That's why hundreds of CUNY faculty and professional staff rallied and marched on Tuesday, October 21st.
Sights and sounds from the demonstration are collected in the above slideshow from the PSC and
President Bowen delivered
this letter to the Trustees during the PSC demonstration at the Sept. 29 CUNY Board meeting.
Contracts are negotiated at the bargaining table, but won on the ground. That means mobilizing our colleagues on every campus, in our departments and in our everyday interactions. But in an era of budget shortfalls and attacks on public workers, that ground operation, while beginning on our campuses, must extend its power to Albany and City Hall.
The PSC and CUNY management have made some progress in contract talks. But CUNY has not yet put forward an economic offer, and union negotiators are pressing management to do so.
Updated: September 8, 2015
Student and faculty leaders gathered at sites throughout the state on Wednesday, July 22 to stress the importance of Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s signing “Maintenance of Effort” (M.O.E.) legislation that would improve the quality of public higher education in New York. At Baruch College, CUNY students were joined by their professors, labor leaders, and Assemblymember Deborah J. Glick, the Assembly sponsor of the bill, which passed with bipartisan, near-unanimous support.
Updated: March 5, 2015
The University Budget Must Fund a Fair Contract
Chancellor Milliken and the CUNY Board of Trustees heard from 30 rank-and-file union members and officers at the Board’s annual budget hearing at Baruch College on November 24, 2014. The members testified about the CUNY Budget Request for 2014-2015 and its connection to a fair PSC-CUNY contract. Together, they made the case for increased salaries at every level and offered unforgettable images of the damage unmanageable workloads can inflict on CUNY students, faculty and staff.
CUNY contracts are negotiated at the bargaining table, but won on the ground. And we need to keep up the pressure on CUNY and the State and City officials who approve our contracts. That's why hundreds of CUNY faculty and professional staff rallied and marched...
Updated: December 3, 2014
A message from President Barbara Bowen--Sept. 30
Close to 1,000 members came out for yesterday’s contract demonstration at the Board of Trustees. Thank you for your beautiful response to the union's call. It was a spirited, inspiring event. The huge turnout speaks for itself: our numbers are the best testimony to the intensity of our demand that the CUNY administration act now to resolve the contract.
Updated: March 12, 2015
President Bowen delivered this letter to the Trustees during the PSC demonstration at the Sept. 29 CUNY Board meeting. In it, she says negotiations “cannot advance without money on the table.” She demands “an economic offer that recognizes the quality and importance of the work we do.”
Updated: March 12, 2015
Sights and sounds from the demonstration are collected in the above slideshow from the PSC and a video from
. Check them out. The Chief Leader
Close to 1,000 members came out for a contract demonstration at the Board of Trustees meeting on Monday, September 29. In a message sent to PSC members Tuesday, September 30, PSC President Barbara Bowen called the turnout a “beautiful response to the union's call.” “Our numbers,” she said, “are the best testimony to the intensity of our demand that the CUNY administration act now to resolve the contract.” A letter that Bowen delivered to the trustees at the meeting is posted
here. In it, President Bowen says negotiations “cannot advance without money on the table.” She demands “an economic offer that recognizes the quality and importance of the work we do.”
Updated: September 15, 2014
Message from President Barbara Bowen
This week marks the start of the new academic year, and I want to take the occasion both to wish you well for the year and to bring you up to date on contract negotiations.
Serious negotiations for a new PSC contract began on June 20, when PSC and CUNY bargaining teams met to exchange demands.
Momentum is growing in negotiations for a new contract, with two formal bargaining sessions and several subcommittee meetings held during the last month. Both PSC and CUNY management representatives have expressed a commitment to reaching a settlement as expeditiously as possible, given that several other public-employee unions in the city have already completed bargaining.
PSC and CUNY Reach Other Agreements
By Peter Hogness
While progress on an overall PSC-CUNY contract was stalled by the Bloomberg-era freeze in municipal labor relations, PSC and CUNY management negotiators were not idle. The union made significant gains in benefits and working conditions.
Collective bargaining for a new PSC contract began in earnest last Friday, June 20th. The negotiating teams for the union and CUNY management met for about three hours, and made a good start on what promise to be intense negotiations during the summer. The sides exchanged demands and discussed ground rules for further sessions. One thing established immediately was that the union has the right to bring observers and faculty/staff experts to future bargaining sessions. Read the full update.
Getting a New Contract: A Letter to PSC Members
By Barbara Bowen
PSC is fighting for a 'fair and a progressive contract' that may be negotiated in the coming months. PSC President Barbara Bowen says now is the time to build a united and collective voice for the best possible contract.
February 27, 2014
Dr. Barbara Bowen
Professional Staff Congress/CUNY
61 Broadway, Suite 1500
New York, NY 10006
Dear Dr. Bowen:
This letter will confirm the parties' agreement regarding modification of Articles 25.1 and 25.2 of the 2007-
Joint Announcement of City Tech Agreement
We are pleased to announce that the City University of New York and the Professional Staff Congress/CUNY have reached agreement on aligning the teaching load at New York City College of Technology with that of other comprehensive and four-year CUNY colleges. Starting with the beginning of the 2014-15 academic year, Professors, Associate Professors and Assistant Professors at “City Tech,” as the college is universally known, will be responsible for the same contractual teaching load as their counterparts at CUNY's other four-year colleges.
Two hundred PSC members joined a union rally at the CUNY Board of Trustees meeting at Baruch College Monday, September 30. Faculty and staff demonstrated inside the Board meeting and in the street outside Baruch to reiterate the union’s refusal to accept an austerity contract for its members or an austerity education for CUNY students. A fair contract, quality education for CUNY students and action in response to the 92% No Confidence in Pathways vote were the union’s demands of the CUNY Board.
The contracts for all of New York City’s municipal unions have expired for the first time since the fiscal crisis of the mid-1970s. On Wednesday, June 12, PSC members joined thousands of city workers in rallying outside City Hall to demand that the next mayor negotiate fair contracts with them. See a slide show of photos from the rally.
Next Deadline is June 7
PSC has reached agreement with CUNY on a three-year pilot program of Phased Retirement for full-time instructional staff who participate in the Optional Retirement Plan and are at least 65 years old. Instructional staff members interested in participating in the program starting Fall 2013 must express interest in doing so by submitting a notice of intent to their department chair/supervisor by May 15. Interested instructional staff must work with their department chair/supervisor to decide on a mutually agreeable “phased” workload configuration.
A formal application must be submitted by June 7.
An agreement between the PSC and CUNY means that funding for this benefit will continue past December 31. Across CUNY, parents-to-be welcomed the news.
Parents and children who took advantage of the leave benefit at a celebration at the PSC Union Hall.
On Wednesday, January 26th the PSC bargaining team met with CUNY management to begin negotiating a new successor agreement to the contract that expired on October 19, 2010.
In a packed meeting attended by more than 200 people 0n 11/4/10, the PSC Delegate Assembly voted on Nov. 4 to adopt a bargaining agenda for negotiations on a new contract.
Imagine a committee with only one goal – to improve your life at work – with an agenda developed by the faculty and staff (not the college president or the chancellor’s office), with only one meeting per semester and hundreds of members to share the work, and with a serious chance of wielding power within the University and beyond – wouldn’t you want to be part of it? That’s what we are asking you to do: join the Committee of 1000.
The PSC and CUNY have negotiated a Dedicated Sick Leave program allowing eligible participants to donate and receive sick days in cases of serious injury or illness.