YPSILANTI, Mich. – The Eastern Michigan University faculty has voted to authorize a strike due to a labor dispute during a union meeting Tuesday night.
Members of the EMU chapter of the American Association of University Professors voted 91% in favor of authorizing the strike by more than 500 tenured track faculty.
The strike action that will begin Wednesday (Sept. 7) morning is due to the EMU Administration’s repeated failure to bargain in good faith and reach some common ground on a new labor agreement.
“Our message to EMU students, parents, and alumni is simple: EMU faculty are standing up for you and for quality education,” said Matt Kirkpatrick, associate professor of English language and literature at EMU and chair of the EMU-AAUP negotiating team. “But the EMU Administration has let you down, raising their own salaries while trying to reduce our compensation, and repeatedly failing to bargain in good faith.”
In advance of the strike authorization vote, the EMU-AAUP negotiation team had invited the EMU Administration to continue negotiations on Monday and Tuesday, but they did not get a response.
A bargaining session with state mediators is scheduled for Wednesday morning, and the EMU-AAUP negotiators will attend to reach a fair agreement as soon as possible.
“It’s truly unfortunate that the EMU Administration’s failure at the bargaining table will cause delay and disruption for our students,” said Mohamed El-Sayed, professor of engineering at EMU and president of EMU-AAUP. “We will not be in our classrooms tomorrow, but our negotiating team will be at the bargaining table. We’re looking for solutions that support our students and set the stage for quality education at EMU for the long term.”
The previous agreement covering more than 500 tenured and tenure track faculty at EMU expired at midnight on Aug. 31.