Collective Bargaining from All Sides in Higher Education

William Herbert
William A. Herbert is a Distinguished Lecturer and Executive Director of the National Center for the Study of Collective Bargaining in Higher Education and the Professions at Hunter College. He is also a Faculty Associate at the Roosevelt House Institute of Public Policy. His scholarship and teaching focus on labor law, history, and policy. His recent book chapter on the history of public workers in New York City appeared in Joshua Freeman (ed.), City of Workers, City of Struggle: How Labor Movements Changed New York (Columbia University Press, 2019).
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As we anticipate new political chances of addressing impediments to workers power,  we offer this video of a webinar that took place on October 19, 2020 with LAWCHA members Jon E. Bekken, Albright College, David Hamilton Golland, Governors State University, Nelson Ouellet, Université de Moncton, Naomi R Williams, Rutgers University.

The discussion was titled Collective Bargaining from All Sides: Unionism, the Faculty Senate, Contingent Faculty, and Academic Administration.  The webinar was part of the 47th annual conference of the National Center for the Study of Collective Bargaining in Higher Education and the Professions, Hunter College, CUNY.

The questions for the webinar were:

To what extent are faculty part of the decision-making process of their institutions? To what extent are they employees of their institutions? What responsibilities and rights do faculty have in the workplace? How does this differ from unionized and non-unionized schools? And where do adjuncts fit in?

These are but a few of the questions with which our panelists from two countries have wrestled in their recent roles on campus and in their scholarship. Of our four panelists, two have led faculty senates, three are in unionized workplaces, one has been a union grievance officer, two have focused specifically on the concerns of contingent faculty, and one has been a department chair.

This panel proposal was originally solicited by LAWCHA President Will Jones for submission for inclusion in the program of the National Center for the Study of Collective Bargaining in Higher Education and the Professions conference. It was accepted for that conference, which was delayed until October, 2020, and made virtual. The delay was positive as our topic continues to be vital and relevant. Indeed, just as we had more to say in October 2020 than we did in March 2020, we will have even more to say in May 2021 at the forthcoming LAWCHA conference.