In June 2020, the unversity sent a message to all faculty and staff notifying them that the following language would be inserted in their 2020-21 Notice of Appointment:
“During the term of this appointment, the University reserves the right to temporarily adjust or reduce your salary or to require you to take unpaid furlough days. The University shall only exercise these rights if budgetary conditions of the University require it. Further, you will be provided at least 30 days’ notice prior to the University exercising any of these rights.”
This change has been unilaterally imposed by administrators with no explanation of the decision-making process and no indication of how and whether faculty were involved in that process. While we recognize that the financial challenges currently facing the university are substantial and difficult to resolve, we reject the premise that decisions in this area are to be made unilaterally by administrators. The question of whether and how salary adjustments or furloughs are to be initiated is far too important to be answered without faculty involvement. We reject this contract language, and insist that any replacement text must specify a meaningful, binding mechanism to insure broad faculty representation in any such process that arises.