Office of the Vice President for Global Communications

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

University says LEO plan to discuss union activity during class time violates agreement, state labor law

The university has put the Lecturers’ Employee Organization (LEO) on notice that a plan to use class time today and Thursday to discuss union activities is a violation of both the U-M-LEO agreement and state law.

For more information
LEO at the U-M
Lecturers’ Employee Organization

LEO leadership announced it was asking lecturers to devote 10 minutes of class time to what it called a teach-in to explain the subject matter of current negotiations and publicize a rally at noon Thursday.

Jeffery Frumkin, associate vice president and senior director of academic human resources, said a plan to use class time to discuss union activities violates Article III of the U-M-LEO agreement as well as state labor law. Lecturers are non-tenure-track instructors who teach primarily undergraduate classes.

“We believe it is damaging to our students to divert class time away from the curriculum and to this labor dispute less than two weeks before the end of classes,” Frumkin said. LEO and the university are negotiating a new contract. The current three-year agreement, which covers 1,445 LEO members, expires May 15.

Teresa Sullivan, provost and executive vice president for academic affairs, said it was her expectation that “lecturers will refrain from this impermissible action and will continue to devote their class time to providing outstanding instruction to their students during this busy time.”