LETTER TO THE EDITOR: EC labor rights advocates make the case for adjunct faculty unionization

Dear Elmhurst College Community,

 

It is clear to the students of Elmhurst College that the most vital resources for our education are our educators. This is why last semester, when our adjunct and contingent faculty began the process of unionizing, many of us were eager to show our support and aid them in gaining the income and benefits they deserve. 

Non-tenure track faculty make up the majority of educators at our school, but as contracted, non-permanent employees they are vulnerable to low wages and lack of resources such as office space. By supporting their efforts towards unionization, we are investing in the quality of our own education as well as the quality of their work environment.

Unionization is a process of cooperation; a union cannot form without the workers’ mandate. It is the faculty themselves, not any outside entities, that will make this decision. 

With this in mind, it is our hope as students, as well as the hope of many tenure-track and tenured faculty, members and clergy of the United Church of Christ, and Elmhurst alumni, that the Elmhurst College administrative body stay neutral towards these efforts and respect the right of Elmhurst faculty to form a union.

It worries many of us to learn that the school seems to be taking an oppositional stance to union organizing, sending out anti-union emails to non-tenure track faculty and hiring lawyers to fight the unionization efforts. We want our faculty well-trained, well-treated, and well-paid, and do not want our tuition money to be used against them.

We, the students of Elmhurst college, alongside professors, activists, alumni and clergy stand and will continue to stand with our educators for the good of our education and our community.

 

In Solidarity,

Elmhurst Student Labor Rights Coalition

 

Sam Davis

Estrella Vargas

Sarah Dalicandro

Miha Turk

Ben McAdams

Taylor Fisher

Garrett Focht

Uriel Hernandez

Claire Groch

Mariah Faiola

Khateeb Mohsin

Samantha Marino

Evan Wilcek

Quinlan Smith