Join PCCFFAP on International Workers’ Day (May 1st)

President's Message

Frank Goulard and Jeff Grider at May Day
Frank Goulard and Jeff Grider at May Day

Greetings:

I’m writing to invite you to join your fellow workers at the May Day demonstration on Monday, May 1st. The demonstration will take place in Shemanski Park (north end of the PSU Park blocks), with a rally at 2PM and a march to follow at 3PM.

PCCFFAP leaders and members will be under the marquee on the 8th Ave. side of the Schnitz–right across the street from Shemanski Park starting at 2:30 and will join the march when it starts at 3pm.  We’ll have PCCFFAP banners, shirts, and more for you to wear.

Why do this? As you may know, May Day is also known as International Workers’ Day, and is the traditional workers holiday throughout the world. The day was chosen to commemorate the Haymarket Affair, widely seen as the start of the Labor Movement in the United States–when over 200,000 workers in Chicago struck for the 8-hour work day. Many countries continue to celebrate their workers and labor movements on the first of May, but not the United States.

Please join us in celebrating labor history, and also to advocate for labor, environmental and racial justice in the United States and throughout the world. We aim not just to resist, but advocate for a better world. It starts with getting involved wherever possible.  

Let us know if you can be part of the meet up–or just show up with friends, family, and/or co-workers. I hope to see you there.

In Solidarity,

Frank Goulard, PCCFFAP President
frank.goulard@pccffap.org

Get Trained as a Union Organizer this Year! (MOD-P 2017)

President's Message​Dear Colleagues:

I’m pleased to announce that the federation will be participating in AFT-Oregon’s second annual Member Organizer Development Program (MOD-P), a training and development opportunity for PCCFFAP members (that’s you!) who are ready to take their organizing skills to the next level and build our union for the future.

MOD-P is a 6-week program that teaches organizing skills through real-world experience in concert with staff and local leaders. Members who participate are supported through a work stipend that reimburses them for lost wages, and help securing release time from our employer.

We are looking for members who are interested in using this development opportunity as a way to jump-start or deepen a long-term involvement with our federation. Does that sound like you? Read on …

Program highlights include:

  • Attend a three-day organizing training with other MOD-P participants from other Oregon educational institutions

  • Get real-world field experience under guidance from professional organizing staff

  • Regular team meetings with other MOD-P participants to compare and learn

  • Establish and build organizing practices for our federation

Admittance into the program is competitive and will be based on an application and interview.

Thinking of applying? Want to talk more about it? Send me an email now and I can help you apply before April 17.

In Solidarity,

Frank Goulard, PCCFFAP President
frank.goulard@pccffap.org

2017 Contract Reopener: You’re Invited!

President's Message

Dear Colleagues:

Have you ever wondered what happens when your Federation bargaining team sits down with PCC administration to negotiate pay and benefits? Now is your chance to find out! This year, bargaining sessions will be open to any member who wishes to attend. Click here for dates and times, and to sign up to be an observer. You’ll also find information about joining the Contract Action Team (CAT), a committee of union members who are interested in learning more about bargaining and supporting the bargaining team. We’ll post agendas for bargaining meetings on this form as they become available – typically one week in advance.

As I’ve shared before, this year is a contract reopener, which means that only wages and benefits will be negotiated. Working conditions, including the three-year contracts for PT faculty, will be on the agenda in 2019 when we have full contract negotiations.

The bargaining team has identified a set of priorities for bargaining. Thanks to everyone who took the survey, we have a good sense of our members’ priorities. The top three issues are:

  1. Cost of living allowance (COLA) for all members
  2. Salary equity for PT faculty
  3. New top step on the salary schedule

You have probably been hearing a lot of doom and gloom scenarios from the administration regarding the PCC budget. While it is true that enrollment is down compared to recent years, enrollment is only one of many factors. Other considerations include:

  • State of Oregon revenue forecast (released in May)
  • Amount of funding allocated to the state’s Community College Support Fund (finalized in June)
  • The PCC Board of Directors approval of a $14 tuition increase over two years.

Assuming state funding remains stable, we are confident that your bargaining team will be able to negotiate a fair and reasonable contract that includes COLAs, pay equity for part-time Faculty, and other issues that are important to our members’ lives and livelihoods.

Stay tuned for more updates, and I hope to see some of you at negotiation sessions!

In Solidarity,

Frank Goulard, PCCFFAP President

frank.goulard@pccffap.org

PCCFFAP seeking nominations for Executive Council

President's Message

Dear Colleagues:

Have you ever considered joining the leadership ranks of your union? The PCC Federation of Faculty and Academic Professionals (PCCFFAP) is seeking nominations for Executive Council positions. You may nominate yourself or a colleague.

Executive Council members are elected to two-year terms. They meet once per month in addition to leading/serving on various Federation committees that advance our organization’s goals of advocating for fair compensation and good working conditions at PCC. As a member of the Executive Council, you will have a seat at the table when matters of pressing importance for you and your colleagues are being discussed – everything from deciding whether to back candidates for PCC Board of Directors to prioritizing issues at the bargaining table. In short, it’s an amazing opportunity to make a real difference at PCC.

Below you will find a timeline for the 2017 election, as well as list of the positions up for election this year. Candidates will be asked to provide a 125-word statement, which will be sent to all members prior to the ballots.

And if you have questions or would like to chat with an Executive Council member about what it’s like to serve, reach out! Reply to this email and we will connect you with a union leader who can tell you more.

Sincerely,

Frank Goulard, PCCFFAP President

frank.goulard@pccffap.org

FEDERATION OF FACULTY AND AP ELECTIONS 2017 TIMELINE

April 3  Nominations Open

April 18  Nominations Close

April 20  Mailing or Email to announce those running for Office

May 11  Ballots Mailed

May 29  Ballot deadline

May 31  Ballot Count

June 2  Announce Winners at Executive Council Meeting

EXECUTIVE COUNCIL OFFICES OPEN 2017

Vice President of Political and Legislative Action: Chairs the Political and Legislative Action Committee; coordinates the political and fundraising activities of the Federation; prepares campaign reports; works closely with the President and the Executive Council to develop and implement political education strategies, represents the Federation on the AFT-Oregon Political and Legislative ActionCOPE Committee and to the Northwest Oregon Labor Council (NOLC).

Secretary: Keeps records of the General Membership and Executive Council Meetings; conducts correspondence; maintains records; sends meeting minutes to Executive Council members; provides copies of the meeting minutes of previous Executive Council and General Membership Meetings; acts as the custodian of the seal and charter of the Federation.

Vice President of Communications: Gathers and edits information for publication; chairs the Communications Committee, works closely with the President and other stakeholders to develop member communications and coordinate the local’s communications strategy.

Vice Presidents for Membership: FT faculty, PT faculty, and APs (3 positions): Chairs the Election Committee, conducts elections and ratifications, chairs the Membership Committee and conducts Membership Drives, maintains a current list of committees and Federation Representatives.

Campus Representatives for FT faculty, PT faculty and APs at Rock Creek, Southeast, and Cascade (9 positions): Represents each Campus or building(s) from which they are elected; communicates and meets with members, acts as a grievance representative when requested; supports the Federation representatives in their areas.

Bridge the Divides in 2017: Take a Colleague to Coffee!

PCCFFAP is excited to announce a new Federation initiative: Take a Colleague to Coffee.

PCC is a huge institution with many divides–between campuses, types of work, and areas of specialization (among others). One of the most important things we can do as a union is bridge those divides. PCCFFAP represents all faculty (PT and FT) and all of our academic professionals.

The more we know about one another, the stronger we are as a college–and as a union. To bring us closer together, PCCFFAP is inviting you to take a colleague out to coffee, tea, or other refreshment. Use a $10 voucher, provided by PCCFFAP (more below) at any campus food service location, learn a little about a colleague–and share with us a little bit about what you learned.

We hope you’ll take advantage of this opportunity, described in detail below. And if you want to go out to coffee with one of our union leaders, please write to one of our Executive Council members. We’d love to have coffee with you.

Here’s a simple way to reach out across the divides:

  1. Get a $10 voucher for PCC food service
  2. Invite a colleague out to coffee. For example:
    • Sylvanians take out a SouthEaster
    • Part-Timers invite an Academic Professional
    • Department Chairs invite a colleague from Workforce Development
  3. Ask these three questions of your co-worker:
    • Tell me about your job; what does a typical week look like for you?
    • What’s the best part of your job?
    • What would you change about PCC if you could?
  4. Share a short summary with your federation leaders
  5. Repeat all year and build connections across PCC.

Thanks in advance for reaching out across the divide. We look forward to hearing from you!

Standing Up to Trump’s Travel Ban

President's MessagePresident Trump’s executive order that prohibiting entry into the United States by citizens of a targeted set of countries with predominantly Muslim residents affects approximately 25,000 people holding student and work visas, and as many as 500,000 people who are permanent legal residents of the United States. This order is already harming many AFT members and millions of our students, patients, families, friends and neighbors.

AFT and AFT-Oregon stand unequivocally against these actions. Whether or not you are among those directly affected, we encourage you to embrace the important ally role you have in distributing credible information and providing assistance in your communities.

AFT is providing resources  about the entry ban, who it affects, what those affected should expect, how to connect to legal assistance in your area and how to organize to fight against these bigoted actions.

I encourage you to go over this information carefully and share it with your colleagues. You’ll be hearing from us more as this situation develops.

Now more than ever, we need to reaffirm that our schools, campuses, hospitals and public spaces remain safe zones, free from racism, hate and the threat of deportation.

PT Ally awards!

Winners of the “part-time” ally awards, 2016

Academic Professional: Heidi Edwards.

Heidi envisioned the first “adjunct awareness week,” designed the 76% buttons, participated in 6 of the 8 TLC meetings to debrief the roll out of the first 100 3-year-contracts, and represented PCC at the international conference of the Coalition for Contingent Academic Labor this summer.

Administrator: Alyson Lighthart

Alyson serves as a division dean at Cascade. While still new in her position, she joined the EAC task force to study the “part-time” faculty experience at PCC, and gave unwavering support as the report slowly moved through PCC process and channels.

Full-time Instructor: Ed DeGrauw

 Ed served as an elected Federation officer until this Spring and as a parting project he took the lead in conversations with administration about their recent enforcement of a cap on tutor hours — an action with horrific impact on many long time “part-time” instructors. Thanks to Ed’s smart and persistent work, the administration agreed to raise the cap by 5 hours. Current officers are continuing his lead, with a focus on the legal basis for the caps.

Winners of the “part-time” ally awards, 2015

Academic Professional: Peter Seaman and Roberto Suarez
Administrator: Kendra Cawley
Full-time Instructor: Michele Marden and Nick Hengen-Fox
Special award: Sylvia Gray and the Project ACCEPT task force

Why the awards?
At PCC, “part-time” (job insecure) instructors experience their “place” in the academic caste system through a myriad of differences in their work lives compared to “full-time” colleagues. For example:

* Some people can speak their minds without concern they will lose their jobs, while others walk on eggshells around colleagues, reasonably anxious about what stray comment could mark the end to their precarious work-life at PCC.

* Some people collect regular and predictable paychecks, while others have to figure out how to get through a “paycheck drought” — without e en knowing if the classes scheduled for the next term will  go, to provide an income on the other side of the drought.

* Some people know where their desk will be at a campus they have worked at for years, while others have their desks, phone numbers and mailboxes move around in strange and unpredictable ways.

With these awards, we recognize and express appreciation for the creativity and sensitivity of “full-time” colleagues, Academic Professionals, and administrators who work to make the irrationality and unfairness of this caste system visible, and who contribute to undermining or mitigating the damage it causes.

 

Project ACCEPT proposal passes in the Educational Advisory Council (EAC)

A hugely important step has just been taken by the EAC — an advisory committee made up of faculty, APs, and administrators from around the college. This is the main avenue for faculty members to participate in the governance process.

By a large margin, the members of the EAC voted on 12/9 to adopt the recommendations of the Task force on work place climate for “part-time” instructors. The vote at the EAC meeting was 27 in favor, 3 opposed, 2 abstentions. (Some members are administrators, and they were among the nay and abstain votes.)

The vote was put on hold at the insistence of the administration (and their lawyer) while we were in negotiations for a new contract. But the heroic chair — Sylvia Gray, long-time PT instructor in history before finally getting a FT slot — put the recommendations on the agenda of the EAC, month after month, symbolically letting the college administration know that the concerns were not going away. The report and recommendations are both of exceptionally high quality — well researched, clearly stated, and deeply thoughtful. The process took a long time, and many of the individuals who worked long and hard on the project are no longer with PCC.

The recommendations now go to Sylvia Kelley as interim District President. In a meeting at Cascade, she said she did not think that important initiatives at the college — like moving on the Completion Investment Council — would have to wait until there is a new District President. (1) We can hope that she will see these recommendations as among the important college initiatives.

If you haven’t looked the report, we recommend it as holiday reading. There are three “best practice” examples described there, and they are helping to guide the vision of our Federation bargaining team.

A basic principle of social justice is that as soon as enough people understand that the oppressive conditions that structure their lives are NOT inevitable — that a  better world is possible — the status quo becomes intolerable. Looking at how other, comparable institutions have created ways to overcome the faculty caste system — impeding both the joy in teaching AND fully effective student learning — makes it clear that we do not have to simply adapt to the workplace structures at PCC. We can do better!

(1) as heard by Shirlee Geiger in the CA TLC 12/7/2015

AFT Local 2121 takes a strike vote

AFT Local 2121, where members are faculty and other employees of the City College of San Francisco, has set up a strike hardship fund and is in the process of voting on whether to strike for one day.

CCSF has a structure a lot like our union, PCCFFAP — representing both part-time and full-time instructors as well as those in professional job categories supporting student learning.

The agency responsible for accrediting CCSF dismissed the elected Board and appointed replacements. This new board has directed the negotiators to propose such provisions as faculty lay-offs, increased class size for the instructors who remain, and new pay guidelines based on “productivity” (the size of a class.) Union leaders point out that these proposals are not in the interests of students, as they will not lead to increased educational quality, and will likely reduce the supports needed for student success. Indeed, the accrediting agency responsible for setting in motion the process leading to these dire circumstances could itself be ousted based on a recent vote by the community college Board of Governors.

The accrediting agency responsible for the PCC’s status  (NWCCU) has issued us “recommendations” (on assessment of student learning, among other things), but so far the relationship has been more cordial than that between CCSF and ACCJC. Still, this is an interesting case study — a power struggle between a sister AFT-union, an activist accrediting agency, and a  beleaguered administration, all in the context of declining enrollments and increased costs of living for instructors and APs living in a “hip” and densely populated urban setting…..

A constellation of circumstances which sounds disconcertingly familiar.

We will keep you updated as this drama unfolds.

Contract is Ratified

President's MessageColleagues,

I am writing to share results of the vote on the PCC Faculty/AP 2015-2019 contract (collective bargaining agreement). They are as follows:

  • 390 (80.4%) yes (to ratify the contract)
  • 95 (19.6%) no (not to ratify the contract)

The next step is for the PCC board to vote to ratify the contract at their next meeting, which will take place Thursday, November 19. Upon the board’s ratification, the contract will go into effect covering the period from September 1, 2015 – August 31, 2019. The 2015-16 Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) will be applied retroactively to September 1, and should appear in your December paycheck. The new college contribution to the monthly health insurance cap will be effective in December.

Thank you for the robust vote turnout! I appreciate all of the interest, questions, and involvement throughout the negotiations process. Let’s also keep in mind that planning for the next contract negotiations begins now! There will be a re-opener in 2017 to focus on economic issues, and we will negotiate a new contract in 2019. The federation is exploring the possibility of creating a Bargaining Committee which would be open to all federation members. Stay tuned for more news on that and other ways you can get involved and make your voice heard on issues that are important to PCC Faculty and APs.

In the meantime, we welcome your constructive feedback, both positive and critical, as we go forward under the new contract. Whether it is through our campus meetings, work group gatherings, or other involvement, please stay in touch, as we will with you.

Have a good rest of fall term and enjoy the upcoming holidays.

Thanks again for your support,

Frank Goulard
PCCFFAP President