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Admin refuses to bargain in front of FSU members


Dear FSU Members,

We write with three important bargaining updates and a request for your help.

First the good news:  Administration (finally!) signed the Spring 2020 agreement that we reached with them in April (please see attached).

Now the bad news:

You may know that the Provost sent a memo in April (also attached) to faculty about summer teaching.  In her memo, she discussed converting Summer courses to online modality, but without assuring faculty of the $3k distance learning course development stipend, as stipulated in Article 35 of the contract.  We believe that this memo violates the contract, and the FSU Grievance committee will be filing a grievance on behalf of all affected FSU members.

Finally, you may recall that the FSU enacted a new policy of expanded bargaining, which “will by default allow all FSU members to attend all main- and side-table bargaining sessions.”  On May 11th, we wrote to you about this new policy, explaining our work to communicate it to administration and their ongoing reticence to engage or comply with this new policy.

At our last bargaining session, on May 20th, the CBT attempted to follow our union’s policy and asked Administration to allow expanded bargaining team members to join the meeting (we had 41 FSU members asking for entry).  They refused to do so.  This refusal is not surprising, given how obstinate they have been throughout this process.  But it is a clear signal that we need to insist on expanded bargaining and demand that administration recognize our lawful and legitimate right to do so.

Hence this request:  we need your help!

Please write to the Administration and tell them you support (and want to participate in!) expanded bargaining. 

Below is a template email you may draw from; please personalize and send to:

                Interim Provost Emily McDermott (

                Vice Chancellor for Human Resources Marie Bowen (

                Employee and Labor Relations Generalist Jennifer Springer (

Dear Provost McDermott, Vice Chancellor Bowen, and Ms. Springer,

I write to ask you to agree to expanded bargaining with the FSU. As a member of the FSU, I believe that contract negotiations should be a transparent process that all FSU members can observe. There is no legal or logical reason to prohibit union members from silently observing a process of negotiation that has a profound impact on our lives and the university as a whole. In fact, expanded bargaining will produce a better-informed faculty and stronger university.

Thanks so much for reading our updates!  If you have any questions, concerns, or want to get more involved, please just reply directly to this email.

Sincerely, and in solidarity,

Core Bargaining Team

Caroline Coscia, Senior Lecturer II, Political Science, FSU Vice President

Katie D’Urso, MTA Field Representative

Maria Mellone, Associate Lecturer, Mathematics

Alex Mueller, Associate Professor, English

Lorenzo Nencioli, FSU Membership Coordinator

Jason Rodriquez, Associate Professor, Sociology

Heike Schotten, Associate Professor, Political Science

Steve Striffler, Director of the Labor Resource Center and Professor, Anthropology

Tony Vandermeer, Senior Lecturer II, Africana Studies

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