Joint PCC/PCCFFAP Statement on Resolution of PT Faculty Pay Issue

Dear Colleagues:

Last month, the College implemented a new part-time faculty salary schedule that is in closer alignment with the full-time faculty schedule as part of the 2019-2023 Faculty and Academic Professional Agreement. As you may know, this was the first step in a phased implementation of the new schedule. Unfortunately, the College and the Federation were not aware of the extent of the negative impact that some part-time faculty would experience in the first year of the new schedule. With a mutual interest in mitigating the negative impact, College administration and the Federation have been in discussions regarding a solution to the loss in pay for impacted part-time faculty.

We are pleased to report that we have identified a solution that retroactively restores impacted part-time faculty pay rates to 2019-20 levels. The College is securing the necessary approvals and will be taking steps to implement these changes as soon as possible. Funds outside of the negotiated agreement have been identified and will be used to adjust pay for part-time faculty who experienced a reduction in their hourly rate this fall due to the negotiated changes. It is anticipated that retroactive pay for this group for Fall term will be paid no later than March 5, 2021, and the pay for future terms will be built into the salary schedule.

Thank you for your patience as we worked to resolve this issue, and please be in touch with any questions.

Sincerely,

Frank Goulard, PCCFFAP President

Shirlee Geiger, Contract Administration Officer for Part Time Faculty

Cheryl Belt, Director, Employee and Labor Relations

Bargaining Update #5
Contract Expires Aug. 31!

President's Message

Dear Colleagues,

Our contract expires on August 31, 2019. If administration doesn’t agree to the Federation bargaining team’s fair and reasonable suggestions by September 1, our Federation will be working without a contract. This means we’ll continue to work under the expired contract’s provisions. Working without a contract can be stressful but it is not unusual. We did it for 73 days in 2015. We will certainly share more information if it comes to that, but for now I’d like to tell you one benefit of working without a contract: it releases us from the no-strike clause, giving us significantly more leverage at the bargaining table.

We’ve been getting questions from members about where things stand, so here is a quick summary:

  • The bargaining platform was developed with member feedback beginning in Fall 2018. Federation leadership asked for your input via surveys, campus and center meetings, and countless in-person and email conversations. The platform guides all of our proposals and conversations with management.
  • We are five months into bargaining non-economic issues and we are preparing to begin the economic portion of bargaining, where we negotiate wages and benefits. (The reason we wait to discuss monetary issues is that the state budget for community colleges is not known until late June.)
  • Progress on non-economic issues has been frustratingly slow, and threatens to delay economic negotiations. Administration may be trying to run out the clock on some of these issues.

You can read through the previous bagaining updates to see that we’ve reached tentative agreements on a handful of relatively minor issues, but when it comes to the issues that are of highest priority to our members, administration has been slower to respond. For instance, our proposal to extend the AP Leave Bank to cover caregiving was presented on March 29, and in each subsequent session they tell us that they are still researching the issue. The same could be said about a number of other issues and proposals.

Here’s the good news: The state budget for community colleges came in higher than expected. We suspect the administration is busy moving the goalposts, so that they can present this good news in a more dire light, along with a host of reasons the college can’t afford a reasonable COLA (cost of living adjustment) among other things. We need your help to keep the pressure on administration – both to settle with us on non-economic issues, and to ensure a fair and reasonable economic package that helps members keep up with the skyrocketing cost of living in the Portland metro area.

We recently packed the negotiations room with over 30 members who were observers. It made a difference. Please consider attending a bargaining session. The next one is this Friday, August 2–and we’ve added many dates to our calendar. The more the administration knows you are paying attention and want the contract settled, the faster we will get there. The best way to tell them that is by showing up.

And please continue to be in touch regarding your questions and concerns around bargaining. 

In solidarity,

Frank Goulard
PCCFFAP President

CAWT Program Closure

President's Message

Dear Colleagues:

On February 8, PCC administration announced plans to close the Computer Applications and Web Technologies (CAWT) program. This decision leads to the potential lay off up to 14 full time (FT) faculty and 61 part time (PT) faculty, not to mention causing stress and uncertainty for many other programs that include CAWT courses as part of their degree and certificate requirements.

This decision was made at the highest levels of the college, behind closed doors, without the knowledge of or input from faculty, students, or union leadership.

In an email to the PCC community, Vice President of Academic Affairs Katy Ho said the decision was based on “thoughtful recommendation” from college leaders, that it comes with a “strong recognition” that the college needs to continue teaching computer literacy and software applications, and that next steps “are being determined.” Incredibly, she even cited the college’s commitment to YESS.

In notifying PCC Federation of Faculty and Academic Professionals (FFAP) representatives just prior to the announcement, administration stated they would hold a meeting with the department’s FT faculty but admitted they had no plan to communicate the decision to the affected PT faculty, with one administrator saying “I’m sure they’ll hear about it,” presumably from the FT faculty. When asked if there would be an opportunity to transfer current, qualified instructors to the new program, administration refused to commit to any accommodations, saying “The only decision that has been made is program closure.”

The decision-making process and the lack of care taken in the roll-out makes a mockery of the institution’s mission professing a “collaboration culture,” not to mention the value statement that cites “collaboration predicated upon a foundation of mutual trust and support.”

The upshot for administration is that they can now potentially redesign the CAWT program free from consideration of the people and the livelihoods who will be affected by the changes, free from the decades of expertise and on-the-ground teaching experience of existing faculty. They can pick and choose which (if any) of them gets jobs in the reimagined program, without factoring in seniority, assignment rights, or Multi-Year Contract-holder status.

An injury to one is an injury to all.

If the PCC administration can eliminate a successful program, and then resurrect it with entirely new faculty of their choosing, it sets an alarming precedent. For that reason, I hope you will stand in solidarity with our CAWT colleagues to tell the PCC administration and the Board of Directors that this is unacceptable.

Please come to the PCC Board Meeting on Thursday April 18, 6:30pm, at Sylvania. I will be there along with several faculty and Federation leaders. Let’s tell the college to live up to its mission and values of collaboration, reverse the decision to close the program, and engage with current faculty to redesign the program to better meet the needs of students.

In solidarity,

Frank Goulard
PCCFFAP President

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