Bargaining Update – June 24, 2022

Dear Colleagues,

The teams met Wednesday for a busy session that brought in almost 70 faculty attendees via
Zoom, along with a handful in the room. It was a great turnout, which we made a point of
announcing to the BOT team.

We began with the UFF’s counter-offer on Article 23, Salaries, where we proposed 7% in
Performance Raises, 2.5% in Department Merit, $2 million in Market Equity, 0% Deans Merit,
and 0.5% ADI. The BOT countered:

Performance (also called across-the-
Department Merit0.50%
Dean’s Merit1.5%
Administrative Discretionary
Increases (ADI)

(Both teams agree on the continuation of Promotion Increases of 12% for the second rank and
15% for the top rank and on the continuation of Sustained Performance Increases of 3% for
eligible full professors, eminent scholars, and the top rank of Specialized Faculty every seven
years after their promotion to the top rank.)

The UFF team pointed out that this offer is destructive to faculty morale and that it means faculty
are taking a pay cut: Since our last raise, in 2019, inflation has increased 14%. The BOT’s
response? “Are you saying that inflation is the University’s fault?” Talk about disingenuous.

We had quite a to-do about how the BOT proposes allocating three times more money to Dean’s
merit than to Departmental merit, with the UFF arguing that faculty have created departmental
merit criteria, while deans are held to no criteria. They can award it to whomever they believe
deserves it. They can consider the department’s merit evaluation—or not. They can consider
chairs’ recommendations—or not. They can consult their own internal biases—or not. No! No!,
the BOT team demurred, suggesting deans always make reasonable determinations that best
serve the College by using their own criteria. We suggested that if deans are held to actual
criteria in awarding merit the way departments are, it would behoove them to publicize that fact
to reassure faculty about the possibility of capriciousness. In any event, said the BOT team, this
is money going into faculty members’ pockets. We asked for the number of faculty given these
awards the last time it was awarded and will keep you posted.

They didn’t even bother to create a row for Market Equity increases, the raises designed to slow
compression and inversion. The year 2017-18 is the last time we saw funding in this category,
which is a problem because it needs continual infusions to be effective.

But a different plan for pleasing faculty is afoot. The BOT Team noted that the President was
behind a Memorandum of Agreement that grants 12-month faculty an extra vacation day
during the next calendar year. We signed: An extra day for some faculty is a gain.

We now turn to other articles. The UFF presented Article 17 (Leaves), where we modified our
proposal from two paid family leaves to one. The BOT was uninterested, but they didn’t blow us
off when we asked if it was worth our while to instead propose two paid parental leaves. Stay

The teams tentatively agreed to a new Article 20 (Grievances) that made small changes to the
language about selecting an arbitration panel.

The UFF presented Article 8 (Appointment), where we struck the sections seeking to reduce the
length of employment contracts of Specialized Faculty from four years to three and made other
small changes. The BOT countered with just a small word change. Since then, we also see the
need for another small word change that we’ll fix next time. It seems that the teams are close to

Next up was UFF’s counter on Article 12 (Non-Reappointment), where we continued to try to
change the length of notice for faculty on “soft money” and where we also continued to push for
language saying that a non-renewal must be for “good and sufficient reason.” No dice. The
BOT’s counter
indicated that they wanted to continue the present system (which can be called
modified employment-at-will).

The day’s final article was the UFF’s proposal on Article 19 (Conflict of Interest/Outside
, where we struck the notion of faculty being subject to discipline for “pursuing” a
consensual sexual relationship with an undergraduate. The “pursuing” language makes this
worryingly vague. We also reinserted language that allows consensual sexual relationships
between consenting graduate students and faculty in the same department as long as no
supervisory or evaluative relationship exists. We also seek language protecting faculty by
limiting reports of violations to six months after the most recent sexual encounter and by
requiring that evidence meet the “clear and convincing” burden of proof.

The next bargaining session is scheduled for Wed., June 29 from 2:00-5:00. Our union’s
efforts at the bargaining table are most effective when faculty attendance is high: if you
care about Salaries, please come!
Bargaining sessions are open to faculty, and we appreciate
having you! Meetings are face-to-face at the FSU Training Center (493 Stadium Drive). If you
would like to attend remotely, we welcome that, as well! Please respond to this message and
we’ll send you the Zoom link. (Alternatively, if you retained a previous bargaining Zoom link, it
will still work.)

Regular bargaining updates can be found at our webpage:

The key to a strong Collective Bargaining Agreement is a strong membership base, so if you are
not a member, please join! There has never been a more important time for us to stand together.

All best,
Irene Padavic and Scott Hannahs, Co-Chief Negotiators, UFF-FSU

Spring 2021 Faculty Poll Results

In Spring 2021, 580 faculty members completed the UFF-FSU Faculty Poll. 

Highlights from the survey!

  • 80% felt that across-the board raises for cost-of-living increase should be a high priority.
  • 54% felt that UFF should work towards advocating for healthcare (31% a lot; 23% all it can)
  • 59% felt that UFF should work towards advocating for retirement benefits (31% a lot, 28% all it can)
  • 72% opposed or strongly opposed legislation that would allow university presidential searches to be in secret.
  • 87% opposed or strongly opposed legislation that would allow concealed carry permit holders to carry guns on campus.
  • 64% agree or strongly agree that FSU administrators have inappropriately high salaries compared with FSU faculty.
  • 69% agree or strongly agree that participation in faculty governance is an ethical obligation and engage accordingly.
  • 51% agree or strongly agree that assignments to teach online should be given only to faculty who volunteer to teach online.
  • 79% feel very positive or somewhat positive toward the UFF-FSU Chapter.

In the comments:

  • Salary compression is getting worse and worse.
  • Teaching professors have significantly lower salaries by about $20K than the national average.
  • Important to get tuition scholarships for spouses and dependents.
  • We need more tenure lines, and with a special focus of hiring African-American, Latinx, and Indigenous tenured / tenure-track faculty.