You May Not Be a UAFP Member!
Are you eager to see the UAFP work towards pay increases, job security and improved conditions for Pace adjuncts overall? As we get ready for a new round of contract negotiations in 2021, we need to bring in as many new UAFP members as we can. There is power in collective bargaining, but under federal law, which permits private sector agency fees payers, the potential strength of the union is undercut by default, because the lines are blurred between those whom we represent and those who fully stand with us as full members. Let me explain.
Under our collective bargaining agreement (CBA) with Pace, the UAFP represents approximately 900 adjuncts and part-time instructors in NYC and Pleasantville who are recognized as members of the Collective Bargaining Unit (CBU). If you are getting this newsletter, you are currently recognized by Pace as part of the CBU – but not everyone in the CBU in a formal member of the union, even if you think you pay the “dues.” It is a two-step process.
As a condition of employment at Pace, all union eligible adjuncts and part-time instructors are required to do one of two things: you can join the UAFP and pay membership dues, or you can pay an “agency shop fee” as a non-member (the agency fee is substantially the same amount as the dues paid by members). When you are hired as a part-time faculty member at Pace, the default option is to pay the agency shop fee. You are asked to sign an authorization form so that the university payroll department can withhold the agency fee from your paycheck (doing so is actually a condition of continued employment). But that does not make you a member of the union!
There is a separate form for UAFP membership, and the university doesn’t have to provide it to you. It is mentioned on the authorization form for withholding the agency fee, but in most cases the newly hired instructor has to make note of the address, then go online to download the form, print it, sign it, and then either mail it in, fax it, or scan it to PDF and send it via email. Yes, it’s a hassle! But a year from now, when we sit down to negotiate for a new contract, the first thing we’ll hear from the university’s lawyer is that our union is weak because not everyone in the CBU has become a member.
Why join the UAFP? There are tremendous benefits to becoming a UAFP member. First and foremost, you become part of a strong collective that works together towards pay increases, job security and improved conditions for Pace adjuncts overall. And second, you gain a voice in determining the priorities of this collective and how it operates. While the UAFP represents all members of our Collective Bargaining Unit (CBU) you have no voice in that representation unless you also become a UAFP member.
- Only UAFP members can vote on the contract.
- Only UAFP members may contribute suggestions or take part in the contract negotiation process.
- Only UAFP members can hold union office, nominate officers and serve on committees.
If you are in the CBU we want you to be a full UAFP member so you can have a voice in our collective future. If you want to be heard, join the UAFP now! Click HERE to download our Membership Enrollment Form. Complete and return it to the address, fax number or e-mail on the form. (Don’t forget to sign it!)
If you are not sure whether you are a member or not, please contact me (Maury Hutcheson) at firstname.lastname@example.org.