Wednesday, November 11, 2009

CFA supports GEO

A strike by the Graduate Employees Organization (GEO) is likely to start as early as Monday November 16 and will impact many of the classroom buildings in the heart of the University of Illinois. This is a legal strike produced by the intransigence of university negotiators over the course of seven months and by provocative actions such as the continuing threat to eliminate some tuition and fee waivers. After working for several months without a contract and facing little if any movement in negotiations, GEO has finally decided that it must strike in order to protect the interests of its members. For these reasons, the Campus Faculty Association (CFA) supports this strike. We urge our members to honor the GEO picket lines and to support the GEO in any or all of the following ways:

  1. Buttons, posters, and verbal expressions of support. (Both buttons and posters are available through the GEO and CFA office on the second floor of the University Y on Wright Street.) Please do not under-estimate these symbolic forms of support for graduate employees, undergraduate students, your fellow faculty, and administrators.
  2. Letters of support for GEO, to the DI, deans, the provost, the NG, the Board of Trustees, etc. (Please see the attached for contact information and relevant data.)
  3. Department resolutions, especially with clear statements that the department will not report on grad employee activities or retaliate in any way. Many units have already passed such resolutions.
  4. Cancel your classes, especially if they are in picketed buildings. If you feel that you cannot do this for ethical reasons, arrange to move your class to one of the venues listed on the attached sheet. (This latter option will take some advance planning.) Other options would include providing on-line postings of lecture outlines and course assignments; employing pod casts; etc. The main point would be to stop business as usual and find some way to express solidarity with the GEO in terms of your own teaching routine.
  5. Join in the picketing of your own building in order to demonstrate support and to bolster picket lines. (You can simply show up or coordinate your actions by contacting GEO).

We also have a document suitable for posting and will shortly post details regarding available off-campus spaces to hold classes, should faculty feel this is necessary.

CFA members who still have questions regarding the on-going negotiations and the long process that has precipitated this strike may find further information at the CFA Facebook site (to be linked -- we're almost done with it!) and the GEO website.

1 comment:

  1. Some contact info that may help:

    Board of Trustees Office
    352 Henry Administration Building, MC-350
    Tel: 217-333-1920
    Fax: 217-244-2282

    Provost: 333-6677
    Swanlund Administration Bldg, MC-304

    The News-Gazette :
    Required: Name, address and phone number.
    (250 words max.)

    Daily Illini: with the subject "Letter to the Editor".
    (300 words max.)


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