RUTGERS PROFESSORS COULD GO BACK ON STRIKE BEFORE FINALS

Rutgers students returned to classrooms earlier this week as professors and part-time lecturers reached a tentative deal with the University over compensation and job security.

But the deal has not been formally signed, and faculty members could be back on the picket lines right as final exams begin.

Governor Murphy assisted in brokering a deal between the university and three unions representing 9,000 faculty members, ending the first walkout in the university’s 257-year history. Faculty from three main campuses joined the picket lines after not coming to an agreement after nearly a year of stalled negotiations.

Last weekend a framework for a deal was put in place that included wage increases, and a rule that would allow for part-time lecturers to become eligible for two and four-semester appointments beginning in the fall of 2024.

“This fair and amicable conclusion respects the interests of many different stakeholders, upholds New Jersey’s values, and puts an end to a standoff that was disruptive to our educators and students alike,” Murphy said in a press release at the time of the framework announcement.

However, talks of another strike are ramping up again because the deal has not been officially signed, and several key concerns from the union remain,  including health insurance for part-time lecturers, parental leave concerns, and caregiver support.

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A Facebook post from Rutgers AAUP-AFT read in part, “We are willing to go back on strike if our open demands are not met,” using the hashtag #SuspendedNotEnded.

“We are proud of the historic gains we fought for on the picket line and won at the bargaining table, but we also have many outstanding articles still being negotiated,” a statement from the AAUP-AFT read.

The unions have not set a specific time frame for when they may go on strike, but some are concerned it could be in time for final exams, which are set for May 1st.

 

 

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