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April 21, 2008

Contract Campaign:  On the Air and into the Boardroom

It may be spring break on the calendar, but there is no break in the PSC’s efforts to win a new contract. Beginning this morning, the union is airing a 30-second ad that brings the crisis of uncompetitive salaries to the public’s attention. “New York needs CUNY, and CUNY needs a raise,” it ends by saying. Click here to watch it. The ad is airing for two weeks during morning network news shows and on CNN and NY1.

Next Monday, April 28, we will be taking that same message directly to the CUNY Board of Trustees at their monthly meeting. The CUNY Trustees need to understand the urgency of our situation and press for a fair resolution of our contract. A delegation of PSC activists will carry our message into the Board meeting, and more will rally outside. Join us! Monday, April 28, 4pm, meet outside the Baruch Vertical Campus, NE corner of 24th Street and Lexington Avenue. Click here for a flyer to pass on to colleagues, in person or electronically. For more information, please contact Chris Aikin.

Visit the negotiations section of the PSC website for resources and in-depth information, from comparative data on salaries to brochures on the most pressing issues in these negotiations.

“CUNY at the Council” May 7

Momentum is gathering as PSC members are  collecting signatures on the “CUNY Rising” postcards asking the City Council to restore the drastic budget cuts to CUNY that Mayor Bloomberg proposed in his Preliminary Budget. The postcards will be delivered to the City Council at a rally and press conference on the steps of City Hall on Wednesday, May 7 at 1pm. Please join us! This is an excellent opportunity for a field trip with students in relevant courses, especially for those at community colleges, where operating aid stands to be cut by more than 10% if the proposed budget is not modified. The PSC is also organizing lobbying visits to key City Council Members. In addition, the union is asking every member to send a letter to the Mayor and to the Council Speaker asking for budget restorations; go to the PSC website to send a letter now. To get postcards to distribute, to sign up to lobby or for more information, contact your chapter chair or Cecelia McCall. The website has more information, a flyer you can use to hand out with the postcards and more.

May 2 Workshop for Adjuncts about Unemployment Insurance

On Friday, May 2, from 3:30 to 5:30pm at the PSC union hall (61 Broadway in Manhattan, 16th floor) the union is sponsoring a special workshop for part-time faculty  on applying for unemployment insurance. Experts from the Workers Defense League will discuss the ins and outs of the system and how adjuncts who are seasonally unemployed may be eligible for this protection. If you are interested in coming, please RSVP to Rose Pignataro. Click here for a flyer you can pass on to other members.

PSC Presence Felt at NYSUT Representative Assembly

Fifty PSC delegates attended the NYSUT Representative Assembly April 10-12. The RA is the policy-making body of NYSUT and PSC delegates helped to shape the agenda of our statewide affiliate for the coming year. All of the resolutions submitted by the PSC passed, including resolutions in support of cost-of-living increases for Optional Retirement Program participants; endorsing national paid parental leave; and calling for a teachers’ campaign on the “Jena 6.” The NYSUT delegates also adopted PSC-sponsored resolutions opposing expansion of the war into Iran and opposing the policy of “permanent and preemptive war.”

Chapter Elections

Ballots in chapter elections are due back by April 28. They will be counted on April 29. The results will be posted after they are certified, five to 10 days after the count. For a full set of rules and which chapters are holding elections, see the PSC website.  

“It has been more than a month since Chancellor Goldstein replied to my open letter on the contract.  Yet he still has not made a financial offer and still has not committed himself to raising salaries.  Those of us who work at CUNY every day know how our substandard salaries are hurting us, individually and collectively.  It’s time to bring that message to the Board of Trustees.  Join us on the first day after spring break at the Board meeting at Baruch to demand an offer and a raise”  --Barbara Bowen, President