Category Archives: Higher Education

Stop Layoffs: Contact Your Legislator

One hundred members of URA have been laid off since June and the threat of more layoffs is still very real. Faculty and staff at the State Colleges and Universities have negotiated a no-layoff pledge in exchange for furlough days and delayed raises. So have the workers at the State executive departments (DOT, Treasury, etc).

Join me and ask your state legislators to stop the layoffs.

Through the month of September, as the NJ Legislature debates the State budget, we will ask our legislators to bring Rutgers to the table to save jobs… and money.

If we lose our jobs, most of us will need rental, heating and even food assistance—from the State. We will have no health insurance— and the cost will fall on the State budget.

Rutgers leadership have been lying to legislators by saying that they were negotiating with us on furloughs. They agreed to meet with the URA once for 45 minutes, ignored our proposal and offered no counter proposal.

By protecting our jobs with a no-layoff agreement, we will also prevent Rutgers from dumping its financial issues onto the State’s balance sheet. It’s simple to contact your State Senator and Assembly persons, and it’s urgent we take action before the budget is passed on September 30.

In solidarity,

Christine O’Connell
URA-AFT, Local #1766

Meeting with Pres. Jonathan Holloway

On Wednesday, August 26th, several union presidents representing URA, AAUP, AAUP-PTLFC, AFSCME 888, AAUP-BHSNJ, HPAE, NJEA, Doctors’ Council, and OPEIU met with President Holloway to discuss the labor management relationship at Rutgers and how we all seek to improve it through collaboration and partnership moving forward.

We addressed concerns about layoffs across all of our units, our importance to the success of the University, lack of accountability and response from his senior management team, low morale, and many other issues. It was a productive conversation and gave President Holloway a clearer understanding of our shared commitment and common goals.

I requested to schedule monthly meetings to ensure regular communications, but he did not commit to that. We all agreed that it is important to reset the relationship between labor and management and committed to greater transparency to correct previous “systematic communication failures.”  We are looking forward to developing a strong and mutually beneficial relationship with President Holloway as we continue to navigate through COVID-19 and beyond.