Chapter updates 9/29/2020

Dear Colleagues,

These times provide many issues for updates.  We want you to glimpse all we have here, with fuller details below.

  1.  Join in the training tomorrow (9/30) about our contract  and grievance procedure.
  2.  We’re confronting safety needs on our campus – the John Jay Health and Safety Committee meeting on Friday, 10/2, 12:30-1:30.
  3. J. Paul Narkunas, long-time member of our chapter Executive Committee, presents a compelling and enraging analysis of our academic labor situation, on “trickle down managerialism,” in the AAUP’s Journal of Academic Freedom.
  4. Looming Oct. 9 Voter Registration Deadline compels sharing voting information with your students, including a Spanish-language version.
  5.  The strike authorization vote at Hunter College High School secured filters and independently verified working conditions by today’s deadline.

Don’t miss the Know Your Contract event:

Introduction to the PSC-CUNY contract and contract enforcement:  One of the key functions of the union is to address violations of the contract and address unfair working conditions through the contract enforcement or grievance process.  Tomorrow, Wed. September 30th we’re offering a crash course introducing the major provisions of the CUNY-PSC contract and the enforcement mechanisms for challenging unfair supervisory expectations and/or conditions of work. Here is the zoom link for this community hour event 1:40-2:55. The discussion will be led by Emma Powell, on staff in the PSC’s contract enforcement department. . Call in (929) 436-2866; Meeting ID 87208646799.

Everyone is invited to join the JJC Chapter Health and Safety Watchdogs’ next meeting, Friday October 2 at 12:30.  We are also asking everyone to report any unsafe conditions observed on campus — especially those that deviate from the John Jay College Plan for Reopening — to PSC JJC chapter leadership, PSC CUNY Watchdogs as well as via the JJC Covid 19 Complaint form – which is managed by the college administration.  For links to these and more resources, please visit the JJC PSC Chapter Health & Safety webpage.

Our former grievance counselor J. Paul Narkunas has captured the corporate and financialized nature of university management, exemplified at CUNY and threatening higher education everywhere:  Trickle-Down Managerialism: Accountable Faculty in the Financialized University of Managers.  This excellent new article in the Journal of Academic Freedom  has been hailed throughout out union and spells out what we are fighting against, including the characterization of full-time faculty and the arts with “cost diseases.”

Paul’s article provides the perfect lead-in to the AAUP’s disturbing exploration of corporate mascot ‘s role at another CUNY campus, written anonymously, or by the mascot itself.  Afterword: Can the Managerial Technique Speak? | AAUP “…[S]poiler alert! In this exciting PowerPoint, I take you along on this stuffed bear’s journey as a “Brand Ambassador” at Brooklyn’s one and only, very special two-year college.”

After winning a temporary restraining order against Hunter College High School, our union sisters and brothers secured the top quality equipment and filters, and independent inspections which continued throughout the day and into the evening.  The readiness of many in the PSC to join the picket lines demonstrated the seriousness of our union’s stance.  Ongoing meetings demanded by the chapter to address safety issues will mark a change in Hunter College President Jennifer Raab’s oversight of this unique high-school campus within CUNY.

In only 10 days, voter registration will be closing in New York State, amid concerns that disinformation and nationwide campaigns of voter suppression will have their desired effect of sabotaging the democratic process. When we tried attaching the carefully written and translated election and census materials there, this email grew to 28 pages in length.  Therefore, please follow this link to the combined, graphically enhanced version, with Spanish Translation, or pursue the concentrated, plain version on our chapter webpage.

Several John Jay and PSC Colleagues are working together to develop this page of resources to help faculty address the inroads disinformation seems to have had in our student population.   Watch this space, and contribute ideas.

John Pittman & Zabby Hovey