Update on Janus v. AFSCME

President's MessageDear Colleagues:

On Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments in the Janus v. AFSCME case. The Court will likely find that unions such as ours need to represent all employees whether or not they pay for that representation. If the Court finds against us, we will continue to negotiate contracts (like the re-opener that added two new steps for part-time faculty in September 2017), organize events (like our recent trip to the Oregon Food Bank) represent members in grievances (we’ve represented dozens of members in grievances in the last year), or just help answer questions about our contract. But… we’ll do it with less financial support from the nearly 2000 faculty and academic professionals whom we represent.

We’ll keep working and fighting for fair treatment on the job. Unions won gains—like the weekend in 1937 —long before “fair share” dues became part of labor law in 1977. The Janus case will likely completely flip this Abood precedent of fair share dues. But it will mean we need more help from all of you. More help talking to members. More help organizing activities. More help writing emails like this one—which is drafted by ten members of our union in their “free” time.

For now, what can you do to help? Confirm your membershipIf you would like to activate, or just confirm, your membership, you can fill out a membership organization form online here. Keep engaged—you can read AFT’s amicus brief or check out news coverage. Let your colleagues know why you value being part of a union.

If you’re not sure if you’re a member—or why you’re a member, write back. Ask an Executive Council member on your campus. We want to talk to you—not just about what we’ve done, but what we can do now and in the future.

In other news, please check out the PCCFFAP website for a guest blog from a part-time faculty member and other updates. And don’t forget to sign up or nominate a colleague to attend the annual AFT-Oregon Convention. Click here for more details.

In solidarity,

Frank Goulard, PCCFFAP President

You’re Invited! Discussion with Fast-Food Union Organizers Dec. 5

President's Message

Union Members:

We’ve had a union at PCC for 40 years. Many other workers are not so lucky. PCC Federation of Faculty and Academic Professionals (FFAP) is sponsoring a visit by workers from Burgerville, who have been organizing to form a union since 2013. This session will share the experiences of these workers as they talk about organizing in a low-wage economy and provide strategies for building power in any union under pressure today.

Join us Tuesday, December 5th, 2017
10am-12pm
Rock Creek 7 / 116

Anyone is welcome.

See the attached flyer for more details!

Celebrate the Holidays with your Union

President's Message

Join your colleagues–and fellow union members–for an afternoon of holiday cheer. We’ll have sweet treats and activities for you and your families and a chance to connect outside of the usual work routines.

What: PCC Federation of Faculty and Academic Professionals  (PCCFFAP) Holiday Party

When: Saturday December 9, 1pm-4pm

Where: Southeast Campus, Community Hall

What: Bring your families to decorate cookies, craft holiday (and new year’s) cards, and check in with your fellow PCCFFAP members–and your Executive Council. A reminder that this year’s celebration will be a lighter affair with afternoon tea, coffee & refreshments, rather than a full meal. Also, instead of Santa bringing presents this year, family members will get to make their own gifts and crafts (cookies, crafts and cards) to take home with them.

We also have info to share about…

Why: Free food, good company, time with your family!

I hope to see you there!

Sincerely,

 

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

PS–Want to help with the event? Email FFAP Organizing Committee Chairs Sara Robertson (sara.robertson@pccffap.org) and/or Nick Hengen Fox (nick.hengenfox@pccffap.org).

PCC Strategic Enrollment Management (SEM)

President's Message

Dear Colleagues:

Last week, PCC Federation of Faculty and Academic Professionals (PCCFFAP) leaders Heidi Edwards and Peter Seaman attended the Strategic Enrollment Management (SEM) retreat, along with other members and Jeff Grider, president of the PCC classified employee union.

You’ll be hearing a lot more about SEM in coming months and years. The idea, as President Mitsui said in his opening remarks, is to manage student enrollment more effectively, as 50% of PCC’s budget now comes from tuition (the rest comes from the state support fund at 35% and property taxes at 15%). When we sit down at the bargaining table to negotiate for wages and benefits, tuition will determine to a large extent how much funding is available for these wages and benefits.

SEM will impact our work, in ways that are both seen and unforeseen. Please pay attention when you hear news of SEM, and we in FFAP leadership will likewise do our best to keep members up-to-date. In the meantime, please send any questions to Heidi (heidi.edwards@pccffap.org) or Peter (peter.seaman@pccffap.org). I hope you will look for ways to become involved in the SEM effort.

In solidarity,

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

Know Your Rights!

President's Message

​Dear Colleagues:

Have you ever been treated unfairly by your manager and felt powerless to address it? Have you sought help from administration and been disappointed by their response?

One of the biggest benefits of belonging to the Portland Community College Federation of Faculty and Academic Professionals (PCCFFAP) is union representatives working on your behalf in situations like these. Your membership gives you access to experts who know the contract inside and out, are trained in labor laws, and can advocate for you in stressful situations. Most of the time, issues can be resolved with a simple meeting or phone conversation, while others are more complicated and involve the filing of grievances and sometimes arbitration. Situations like these are rare, but critically important in maintaining a balance of power between administration and employees.

Needless to say, administration doesn’t always like the union to get involved because it may limit administration’s ability to act unilaterally in ways that may negatively affect employees. So I’m writing to remind you that if a manager or administrator ever tells you any version of the following:

  • You are not entitled to union representation.

  • “The union rules don’t allow ______”

  • “The contract doesn’t allow _______”

PLEASE contact me or your federation representative. Unlike administration, we work for you and only you. And while we won’t be able to resolve every situation, we’ll make sure that you are heard, that you have representation, and that the contract is honored.

Thank you for all that you do for PCC, and Happy Veterans Day, especially to our members who have served or continue to serve in our armed services and their families.

Sincerely,

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

 

Fall 2017 Membership Meetings

Please join us at the Fall Membership Meetings. All of the meetings are from 12 to 1 PM.

  • 10/17/17 Tuesday Willow Creek #107
  • 10/19/17 Thursday Cascade Student Union 203/204
  • 10/23/17 Monday SE Campus Community Hall
  • 10/24/17 Tuesday Rock Creek TLC Building 7 #116
  • 10/26/17 Thursday Metro Building 2
  • 10/30/17 Monday Sylvania ST 108
  • 11/1/17 Wednesday Downtown Rose Room
  • 11/3/17 Friday CLIMB #306

Agenda

  • Contract Details and Update
  • Faculty/AP and Classified Breakout Sessions
  • Your Questions and Issues
  • Hot Lunch at each meeting

Click the link below for the brochure.

Member Fall 2017 Meetings

Final Note on Bargaining

President's MessageDear Colleagues:

I wanted to send a quick note to let everyone know that the PCC Board of Directors ratified the Tentative Agreement of our wages and benefits reopener at their September 21 meeting. (For a summary of changes for Fall 2017 to Summer 2019, click here.) While we didn’t get everything we were hoping for, we are confident that we can build on some of the wins in this agreement to continue our push for better pay and working conditions across employee classes. It’s time to start planning for 2019!

I’d like to thank the 100+ people who attended the bargaining sessions. It was somewhat of a new process for the federation, and one that paid off enormously as the administration could see that we were organized, unified, and ready to stand up and fight for a fair and reasonable settlement.

Lastly, keep an eye out for upcoming campus and center meetings. We’ll be meeting at the four campuses, along with Willow Creek, Metro, Downtown Center, and CLIMB, between October 17 and November 3. I hope to see many of you there and to hear from you about the issues most important to you.

Wishing everyone a happy and productive fall term.

In solidarity,

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

A Tentative Agreement — with Real Gains

President's MessageColleagues,

After more than five months of negotiating, the PCC Federation of Faculty and Academic Professional​s (PCCFFAP) and PCC Federation of Classified Employees (PCCFCE) joint bargaining team reached a tentative agreement with the PCC Administration team at 8pm on Friday, September 15th.  This agreement is for the two-year reopener for wages and benefits from summer 2017 to summer 2019 for our collective bargaining agreement (CBA).

The budgetary challenges were great. The state is funding community colleges at a meager 1.8% annual increase for the upcoming two years​ while PERS employer rates are increasing at double-digit amounts for the upcoming several biennia.

We didn’t get everything we wanted. Yet, with your support–we had over fifty members of the two unions observe negotiating sessions over the summer–and the hard work of our negotiating team, we made important gains towards equity of pay for employees–and towards greater stability for many of our most vulnerable members.  And some of the provisions I detail below truly are stepping stones to accomplish more in the next negotiations in 2019.

The short story: we fought and won

  • a COLA for all employees each year;
  • new top steps for APs and PT Faculty;
  • greater support for PT Faculty participation in the essential work of running the college;
  • increased funding towards health insurance caps.

Again, it’s not everything we want–or everything we deserve. But given the conditions, we believe it’s a fair settlement.

Below, I’ve broken down each of the major changes. For now, I offer a huge thanks to our negotiating team. When you see them or if you wish to email them, please do extend your thanks for their dedicated and passionate work! The FFAP team included Allison Gross, Peter Seaman, Shirlee Geiger, and Frank Goulard. The FCE team included Jeff Grider, Cherie Maas Anderson, and Elisabeth Garcia Davidson. We also thank federation support staff Michael Cannarella, who will be retiring soon. On the administration team were Lisa Bledsoe, Cheryl Belt, Jim Langstraat, Eric Blumenthal, Jessica Howard, and Kurt Simonds.

And again, thank you to our more than fifty members who, for the first time, actively played a part in each session to make this new contract. Their support was truly transformational for our union.

The Changes

COLA (Cost Of Living Adjustment):

These adjustments are in addition to the regular step increases for all members who are on steps.

For FT Faculty, AP, and Classified:

  • 1.25% first year (2017-18)
  • 2% second year (2018-19)

For PT Faculty:

  • 2% first year
  • 2% second year

NOTE: With all of the above groups of our employees, along with all administration employees, there is a 1% rollback each year (2017-18, 2018-19) in our salary schedules, for a total of 2% rollback over the next two years.

Why? In PCC’s 2013 negotiations, in addition to our COLAs and steps, we had agreed to accept an additional 1% COLA to our salary schedules for each of the following four years (2013-14, 2014-15, 2015-16, 2016-17) due to the Oregon Legislature passing into law PERS retiree cuts. Those retiree cuts increased available state dollars to community colleges. We also agreed at the time, that if this legislation was overturned by legal challenges, that we would take a reduction of 1% for the next full biennium. Soon thereafter, the Oregon Supreme Court did rule to overturn the legislation, thereby restoring retiree benefits. Therefore that triggered the aforementioned 1%/year rollback to our salary schedules, slated for the 2017-2019 biennium. So we are now rolling back that additional 1% that we had gained in 2013.

New Top Steps

For APs and Classified, a new top step (in addition to deleting Step 1). The new top step will be phased in over two years for APs in October 2017 (a half-step 1.75% increase) and October 2018 (the remaining half-step increase of another 1.75%)

For Classified in July 2017 (retroactive, a half-step 1.5% increase) and July 2018 (the remaining half-step increase of another 1.5%).​

For PT faculty, two new top steps. This moves their existing 9-step salary schedule closer to the 17-step FT faculty salary schedule. This is one of the most monumental changes in our contract. Along with these two new steps is an agreement for a joint faculty and administration task force to begin work in Fall 2017 to thoroughly analyze PT faculty work and compensation with an eye towards equity with FT faculty. This will be done in advance of the next contract negotiations, which will start January 2019.

For now, a new step 10 will be in effect in October 2017. Those PT faculty who have taught 3200-3599 hours will be placed on step 10. Then in October 2018, those who have taught at least 3600 hours will be placed at step 11. These steps, like the FT faculty steps, are 3.5% apart.​

Faculty Department Chairs in CTE and Counseling programs will receive additional points in their calculation to determine release and stipend. This should result in most chairs receiving additional release to meet the growing  demands of their programs and students.

PT faculty pay for essential college meetings, including SAC inservice day and other SAC meetings​, will double. They had been paid stipends of $25 for up to two hours, $50 for over 2 hours and up to 4 hours, and $100 for over 4 hours and up to 8 hours. This was roughly $12.50/hr, not even including the preparation or travel time for these meetings–and would soon fall short of Portland minimum wage.

We made the case for our professional PT faculty to be paid at a more professional wage. Now the stipends will be:

  • $50 for up to 2 hours
  • $75 for up to 3 hours
  • $100 for up to 4 hours
  • $150 for up to 6 hours
  • $200 for up to 8 hours
As before, a PT faculty member must make sure with their dean, chair, TLC director, or SAC chair that a particular meeting is pre-approved for this pay.

The college cap contribution towards the health insurance premium for FT employees will increase about 3.5% each year, depending on the choice of self only, self plus spouse/partner, self plus child(ren), or family coverage. That is closely in line with the rise in PCC’s Kaiser and Moda group plan costs.

The college cap contribution towards the health insurance premium for PT faculty remains at 65% of the FT self-only cap. It will likely increase from $474.50/mo to almost $490/mo​. But we were able to garner some extra financial assistance for PT faculty who select self plus spouse/partner (or children), or self plus family. For those two group selections, instead of a $490/mo cap, it will be about a $640 cap and $790 cap, respectively.

There will be an increase to the PCCFFAP Health Insurance Trust from $36,000/yr to $40,000/yr. This is the fund that helps PT faculty who do not qualify for PCC health insurance and pay their own full premiums on the marketplace. This pays out about $100/mo to those eligible PT faculty who apply.

Classified will now have a markedly better PCC early retirement program. The eligible ages will now match the FT faculty and AP ages of 58 to 65. Classified will have a choice between a stipend or support on health insurance premiums, for 4 years or until age 65, whichever comes first. This was a big step for Classified to finally begin to have a similar early retirement program as FT faculty and AP.

Next Steps

Because this is a wage re-opener and not the full contract negotiation, there is no vote by membership necessary. The PCC Board takes the next step of a ratification vote on the reopener this Thursday Sept 21, 7:30pm, at their monthly meeting at Rock Creek. After that approval, the reopener provisions will take effect October 1, 2017, with the CBA’s end date of June 30, 2019 for Classified and August 31, 2019 for Faculty and APs.

As many of you have heard me say before, you start negotiating your next contract the minute your last one is signed. Please, let me–and all of our Executive Council members–know what you think about this settlement. We are already gathering ideas for the next negotiation.

Take care,

Frank

Frank Goulard
President, PCC Federation of Faculty and Academic Professionals​

Bargaining Update: Late Cancellation Last Week

Dear Colleagues:

Your FFAP and FCE Joint Bargaining Team (JBT) was scheduled to meet with the administration team on Friday, Aug 11th at the CLIMB Center. At 5:38pm on the 10th, we received an email from admin. They apologized for the late notice and said they had to cancel the meeting because simply put, they weren’t ready. They said they had been working on various costing options and needed more time to put together a proposal.

The JBT had to spring into action to notify all participants and observers that the meeting had been cancelled. Unfortunately, not everyone received the notifications and some observers showed up to the CLIMB Center Friday morning.

While this late cancellation caused us some undue inconvenience, we are hopeful that this is a positive sign. Admin has yet to present an official proposal, so it would be a constructive step to receive one at the next meeting, scheduled for 9am on Tuesday, Aug. 22nd.

That’s the day after the eclipse and traffic is expected to be fierce. Interested observers should plan on arriving much earlier than the normal 8:45 meeting time in case of traffic delays. The Federations will provide some breakfast munchies for the early arrivers.

Interested observers are encouraged to sign up and attend the next meetings on Tuesday, Aug. 22nd and Thursday, Aug. 24th at 9am at the CLIMB Center. Observers get to provide immediate feedback to the JBT during caucuses and after the meeting. Your attendance is not only valuable as a show of solidarity, but also helps spread the word to your colleagues about negotiations.

Many of you have expressed frustration about the slow progress in bargaining this summer. While we are working hard and hoping for the best, we are also starting to plan for the possibility that the academic year will begin without a settlement. If this happens, we’ll be asking you to get more involved to help us move forward. We continue to believe that there are resources in the budget for a fair and reasonable contract.

Here are some things you can do right now:

  1. Sign up to attend the next bargaining session right now! (The deadline to sign up for the Aug. 22nd meeting is Thursday, Aug. 17)
  2. Please Button up!
  3. Attend upcoming PCC Board Meetings
  4. Wear a Transparency T-shirt, available at the Federation office.
  5. Spread the word to your colleagues!

Yours in solidarity,

Will Mahoney-Watson
Acting FFAP VP of Communications, on behalf of your Joint Bargaining Team
(Frank Goulard, Allison Gross, Peter Seaman, Michael Cannarella, Shirlee Geiger, Jeff Grider, Cherie Maas-Anderson, Elisabeth Garcia Davidson)

Show Your Support!

President's MessageFederation Members,

Despite the slow and disappointing progress in negotiations last Tuesday, we are more committed than ever to demonstrate our unity. Both unions, Classified and Faculty /AP, are working with our membership to achieve a fair, reasonable, and equitable contract for all PCC employees.

To highlight this unity we are asking you, as a member of our union, to print out the flyers below (from a non-PCC printer) and post them in your car window.  Feel free to make copies to give to others, but remember that posting the flyers on college property (e.g., in one’s cubicle) is not allowed. We will also have copies available if you’d like us to send them to you.  Simply contact the Federation Office at mary.sykora@pccffap.org.

Here are some additional things you can do:

  1. Sign up to attend the next bargaining session! The deadline to sign up for the July 27th meeting is Monday, July 24th.  Observers who cannot stay the whole day are welcome to break at lunch or during caucus time.
  2. Please Button up!
  3. Mark the PCC Board Meeting on August 17th and September 21st on your calendar.
  4. Spread the word to your colleagues!

Your attendance as we move forward with negotiations, and your show of unity, is greatly appreciated.

In unity,

Frank Goulard
President, PCCFFAP

Flyers

Fair Pay Flyer

Solidarity Flyer