As you may have already seen, there will be no adjunct strike. At 3:30 am Tuesday morning, three and a half hours after their contract expired, our adjunct colleagues wrested a tentative agreement from the NYU administration. As with any contract we will eventually negotiate, the decision of whether to accept this offer is solely in the hands of the members of ACT-UAW, and we expect our part-time colleagues will be reading the contract, meeting to talk about it among themselves, and voting whether to ratify it soon.
All indications are that this is a very strong contract. Our part-time sisters and brothers have won important victories on health care, pay, job security, and recognition of their work outside the classroom. Among the highlights: the minimum base pay for a four-credit course will go from $6,258.50 to $10,400, which will increase to $13,000 by the end of the contract; adjuncts will be paid for the prep work they put into a class if it is canceled before it runs; and for the first time the university will contribute significantly to dependents’ health insurance.
As with the contract Barnard full- and part-time non-tenure track professors won earlier this year, NYU adjuncts’ victory shows that when academic workers stand together and fight, we win big.
In October, NYU adjuncts voted overwhelmingly—95% of a turnout of 72% of the union—to authorize a strike. This vote came after months of internal organizing. Our adjunct colleagues built a strong union with active members from every school and department across the university. They would never have won a contract without this hard work. It was the strong, active membership and the strong, credible threat of a strike that won this tentative agreement.
We’re inspired, and hope you are too. Will you take this moment to commit to help build your union, Contract Faculty United-UAW? If we all work together, it won’t be long before we, too, are celebrating a union contract.
But don’t stop there. After you’ve signed, talk to two or three of your colleagues and make sure they sign. Talking to our colleagues is the most important thing we can do to build our union and win a victory like the adjuncts did.
Then, let’s celebrate. This Friday at 2:00, join us and the rest of the NYU community on Schwartz Plaza as we celebrate the adjuncts’ win and tell the administration we’re coming for our own.