Temple University Needs an Adjunct Union

In Events, News, Philly Blog on September 15, 2014 at 8:00 am


By Paul Dannenfelser, Ryan Eckes and Jennie Shanker

Adjunct professors have been organizing across the Philadelphia region for over a year, with the support of the American Federation of Teachers, building the United Academics of Philadelphia. Collectively, we’ve had thousands of conversations with faculty across the region, and our membership has increased dramatically since the end of the Spring semester. Our efforts most recently have focused on Temple University.

Today we are launching a card drive at Temple University to authorize an election to form a collective bargaining unit of adjunct faculty. It’s clear we have overwhelming support for this union at Temple.

As part of the Temple University family, we have many reasons to be proud, but unfortunately the rewards are few for the important work we do. The last minute re-appointments and class cancellations, the seemingly random changes in enrollment minimums, the lack of decent compensation, security and benefits for people who have served Temple’s students year after year are some of the issues that we can address only by forming a union. Representing half of the faculty, our union will benefit the entire university community. Our working conditions are our students’ learning conditions.

Senator Barney Frank once famously said “If you’re not at the table, you’re on the menu.” We need representation just as the university’s graduate students and full-time faculty have. Our issues need to be heard, and we need to negotiate with the administration. We are forming this union to have a place at the table. Join us.