Together, we will win.
As our new leadership team assumes office, we must all move forward together to build a bold, fearless, and progressive union, that stands up for and fights for the principles we believe in.
As our new leadership team assumes office, we must all move forward together to build a bold, fearless, and progressive union, that stands up for and fights for the principles we believe in. These principles include providing a quality, first-class education for our students, fighting for racial and economic justice for everyone in our society, and demanding that we are always treated with the respect and dignity we deserve as dedicated, experienced and expert educators and professionals.
As we move forward, we must trust each other as brothers and sisters in our union. We must focus on our common goals and come together as a body to stand up for our vision of quality higher education. We also must better articulate and demonstrate that we are the advocates and champions of our students.
We must come together because we are facing a hostile and adversarial Board of Regents who are actively disempowering us, hurting our students, and diminishing the quality of public higher education in Connecticut. This is a Board of Regents who has overseen drastic disinvestments in public higher education by our state. This Board has happily served one austerity agenda after another. Their corporate orientation and McDonalds Community College notions are a fundamentally different vision for public education than what we believe in.
We are fighting to stop this disastrous merger. Our union has contract negotiations beginning shortly, and we anticipate ridiculous, draconian demands as our brothers and sisters in AAUP were insulted with. Every member in our union must understand the parallels between the merger of our colleges and the attacks on our contracts. They both have one common goal: to reshape higher education into a corporate model that attacks and undermines our professionalism, undermines the quality of the education we provide, and makes us less secure and more disposable.
The Board of Regents champions an underfunded and disinvested community college system, for students and communities already beset by long-standing structural barriers like poverty and systemic racism. And rather than invest in more full-time faculty and staff and put money in the classrooms and buildings where our students are, they are investing in new facilities in New Britain and hiring more administrators.
As such, our union will not allow the Board of Regents, nor their propogandists, to lie about what they are doing to our students or us. We will not entertain fantasies about improving equity outcomes and our colleges retaining our “unique identities”. We will not just sit back and watch the BOR and CSCU administrators destroy our colleges as we know them to build a cheaper, impersonal, cookie-cutter One College. We will not go silently, as they do everything in their means to make us disposable and replaceable units of production, while centralizing power and decision-making via their massive, bloated, wasteful orgy of administration.
So, our new leadership team is here to fight for the principles we believe in. We believe in shared governance. We believe faculty should control the curriculum we teach, and staff should have meaningful input and professional discretion over the services we provide. We believe every member of our community should be treated with dignity and respect.
Friends, a hostile enemy has one foot in the door.
Fortunately – we have a solution. Organize. Step up. Stand up and Fight.
Our union is primed and ready. Now is the time we grow stronger, fight harder, and be the powerful vehicle and voice we desperately need to be for each other and our students.
Believe in each other.
Together, we will win.