February 5, 2021 AAUP Meeting, 4:00 pm
Present: Bill Alexander, Carlo Annelli, Marc Becker (minutes), Sarah Berke, Stacy Davis, Christine Harker, Joey Hubbard, Jennifer Jesse, Andrew Kauffmann, Mark Hatala, Marc Rice, David Robinson, Stephanie Russell, Mateo Tornatore
- Our hearts go out to Bill Alexander who had to put his cat down this afternoon.
- David Robinson presented a report on the reorganization of the AAUP chapter at Mizzou.
- COVID numbers up. 10% of the student body + faculty (like Harker). Local cases bad. Adair isn’t even trying to do content tracing because people were so abusive of tracers. We’re sending a petition around (https://www.change.org/p/laura-kelly-mike-parson-protect-ks-mo-post-secondary-workers-covid-19-vaccine-priority) + we have our statement. People at AAUP were impressed with the petition. Legislators don’t want to prioritize us for vaccines because a) they hate us because we don’t vote republican; b) we’re already open so, unlike K-12, they don’t have that concern. TSU admin doesn’t want to push the issue because of how it might upset budgetary issues. Contact people directly to get them to sign the petition. Also, signup to contact departments with petition: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1tbNQP6owWyXWJE76wRwm2vZiOvegBdvNkn–Njc8mrQ/edit?usp=sharing
- Bill is working on chapter bylaws. Properly drafted bylaws will put us in a good position to organize. We would like people to look over these bylaws and vote to accept at the next meeting: https://docs.google.com/document/d/14g2fZ_IHr7V9GGa10pZsEqW0Z93UFG1vSS3OEIhoSdE/edit?usp=sharing. Question of whether to allow administrators to be officers. If you have any comments or suggestions put them in the document.
- Bill is finishing the report on the faculty survey from last fall and we will post it soon to our webpage. It gives a good indication of how many people want to unionize. We had real momentum last fall with opposition to teaching under covid, and people are accommodating to the new normal. With variants we might be facing a new spike in cases. We need to harness this energy to get momentum–might be a way to jumpstart organizing efforts. We have had concrete outcomes in terms of mass mandate and Covid working group. Championing popular causes among faculty is a way to gain support. More steps to shared governance is a way to strengthen the university.
- Going forward: what next concrete steps do we need to take? If we are facing a cut in faculty, March and April could be crazy. Rumors of 10-20 percent cut. We could harness that energy. David Robinson: usual suspects: AAUP, MNEA, SEIU, AFT, maybe UAW (district 65).
- Mark Hatala: issue of forcing password change every 6 months. Cyber security doesn’t really recommend it. Bill Alexander: obnoxious issue that is worth engaging. Minor issue: wait or use it for fodder?
- David Robinson: Missouri Association of Faculty Senates (MAFS) is meeting next week for the first time in a while. Scott Alberts may attend. See http://www.mafs.org/
- Earlier AAUP wanted to be THE union, but now working together with other unions. So collaboration is encouraged.
- Issue of TSU administration following our personal social media account. Something like this was happening in Kansas? Why is someone being paid to trace this when we are on the edge of financial exigency?
We have evidence from several faculty that the administration is administering social media posts. If you have evidence of this happening, please let us know the details.