Manhattan College Adjunct Faculty Union (MCAFU)

Nov 10 Labor Board Update

Yesterday we continued the hearing at Region 2 of the National Labor Relations Board, a hearing that Manhattan College administration has chosen to pursue in an effort to prevent their employees from voting in an election on the question of union representation. At yesterday's hearing, Dr. Joseph Fahey, Professor of Religious Studies at Manhattan College, testified for the Union.

We have had four days of the hearing so far. Unfortunately, the schedule of the College's attorney keeps changing so the next day of the hearing will not happen until next Tuesday at the earliest. Before then we will be posting updates on our website of the hearing and the issues addressed in the witnesses's testimony. If you are interested in these details please check back at testimony over the next few days.

We are confident that the Labor Board will rule in favor of Manhattan College employees' right to vote on the question of union representation. We are confident, in part, because that was the ruling back in 1999. Yes, that's right, the Labor Board has ALREADY ruled that Manhattan College is not outside the law and that the College's Catholic heritage and mission statement in no way preclude it from being under the jurisdiction of the Labor Board and the National Labor Relations Act. If you REALLY want more details about that, you can read the Labor Board decision at NLRB Manhattan Decision 1999.

But we think it's easier to focus on today and the issue at hand, one which we think is pretty simple: federal law dictates that Manhattan College's adjunct faculty should have the right to vote for or against a union in a fair and democratic election.

Many members of the Manhattan College community have already signed a petition to President O'Donnell stating their support of adjunct faculty's right to vote and urging him to reconsider his decision to waste the College's time and resources in a deja vu battle at the Labor Board. Some people have asked us how they might spread the word about the petition to other colleagues as well as students and alumni. We have created an electronic version of the petition available at Petition.

Adjunct faculty, fulltime and part-time faculty and staff, students, alumni, parents, prospectives and other interested members of the community are all encouraged to sign this petition.

Manhattan College's Administration is now at a crossroads. Though the hearing should conclude soon there will be briefs to write, possibilities to drag this case out in appeals and frankly more opportunities to erode employee good will if the Administration chooses to continue this expensive legal strategy of delay. The other choice, the high road we hope the President will turn back to, is one where the Administration respects its employees' federally protected right to answer the question of unionization themselves in a fair and democratic election. Please sign the petition today and encourage President O'Donnell and the Board of Trustees to take the road worthy of Manhattan College's mission of academic excellence and committment to social justice.

Questions? Concerns? Suggestions? Please call the Union office at 212-989-3470 Sincerely,
Daniel Esakoff, Julie Berman, Sam Rasiotis, Christina Hilo
New York State United Teachers/American Federation of Teachers


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Manhattan College Adjunct Faculty Union / NYSUT / AFT / NEA / AFL-CIO
339 Lafayette Street, Room 202, New York, NY 10012
phone: 212-989-3470; fax: 212-989-8154