Now comes the Illinois Federation of Teachers, organizing the faculty at Northern Illinois.
The choice to explore unionization was not influenced by the state budget impasse or program prioritization, both of which have potential negative impacts for faculty members, such as layoffs and furloughs, [biologist Mel] Duvall said. However, he said he believes the budget impasse and program prioritization may have impacted the decisions of some faculty members when they decided whether or not to become members.The tenured faculty are the stewards of the university. To be sure, the administrative usurpations have been going on, at Northern Illinois and everywhere else, for a long time, and yet this union campaign hints at the stewards taking back that which is properly their purview.
“[Faculty members] were very interested in trying to contribute to the protection of high quality education for the students at NIU,” Duvall said. “They wanted to have a legal and contractual voice that they could bring to the negotiating table. The faculty are the ones who interact with the students and we have the students’ best interest at heart.”