February 7, 2012
AFT Executive Council Extends Its Partnership
With AAUP in Higher Education
LOS ANGELES—The American Federation of Teachers reaffirmed its commitment to collaborating with the American Association of University Professors on higher education organizing and advocacy under an agreement approved today by the AFT executive council.
"The work our organizations have done together has helped faculty and staff on campuses around the country to strengthen their voice and protect the academic and professional integrity of our higher education workforce, particularly at our public research universities," AFT President Randi Weingarten said. "That is essential to providing students with the best educational experience possible."
The initial agreement between the AFT and the AAUP was signed in 2008. In addition to organizing, the partnership extends to working together on the many challenges facing public higher education institutions, Weingarten said. "Colleges and universities are dealing with a decline in public funding, attacks on academic freedom and a loss of a full-time faculty corps accompanied by increased reliance on undersupported contingent faculty."
Since establishing the original agreement, the AFT and the AAUP, among other projects, have helped the University of Illinois at Chicago United Faculty win recognition as the collective bargaining agent for all faculty and are campaigning to enable United Academics to represent the research and instructional faculty at the University of Oregon.
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The AFT represents 1.5 million pre-K through 12th-grade teachers; paraprofessionals and other school-related personnel; higher education faculty and professional staff; federal, state and local government employees; nurses and healthcare workers; and early childhood educators.