Statement From CSU-AAUP President On Today’s Supreme Court Decision

Dear CSU-AAUP Members,

Today the U.S. Supreme Court issued a ruling in the Janus vs. AFSCME case. This decision hurts all working and middle class people, but especially those of us who have dedicated ourselves to public service.

The Janus lawsuit, which was funded by dark money from special interest groups and the wealthiest corporate elites, pits working people against each other and curtails our freedom to negotiate for better working conditions in the public agencies that serve us all—including our public universities.

While today’s decision tips the scales of justice clearly in favor of corporations eager to privatize and outsource public services, our union remains a strong voice for quality higher education because you—our members—are strong.

Keep CSU-AAUP strong so the faculty voice is heard loud and clear. Click here to become a CSU-AAUP member or recommit your membership because CSU-AAUP is committed to fighting to protect your voice and your rights and our students’ futures.

In the Connecticut State Universities, we know from experience that faculty working conditions are student learning conditions. Let’s never forget the 2015 contract negotiations between our union and the Connecticut Board of Regents. Faculty stood to lose funding, research grants, and even tenure. Because our union is strong, CSU-AAUP successfully fought each and every one of those proposals. As long as our membership remains strong, CSU-AAUP will continue to fight for your academic freedom and tenure, enhanced pay and working conditions, and the necessary resources for your research. That strength translates to excellent learning conditions for your students.

While the 5-4 decision was not unexpected, it adds urgency to our ongoing efforts to protect your pay, retirement security, and healthcare, as well as your tenure and your academic freedom.

Strong unions built our nation’s middle class, but this decision makes it easier for corporations and the ultra-wealthy to chip away at those good, middle-class jobs while lining their own pockets.

There are immediate actions you can take today to defend our union from the dark money donors behind Janus.

If you haven’t already, please sign a CSU-AAUP membership form or recommit to your membership by clicking here.

  • Please join us and other Connecticut unions at a press conference today at 4 p.m. in front of the Hartford Supreme Court building (231 Capitol Ave, Hartford) to show your support.
  • If you use social media, please post about supporting your union and use any or all of the following hashtags: #Union; #ThriveTogether; #SCOTUS; #StrongerTogether. You could also post a photo of yourself with a #Union sign to show your support.

Here are some sample posts you may wish to use for Twitter:

  1. We’re sticking together in our #Union no matter what #SCOTUS says.
  2. Women standing together in a #union are paid 31% more on average than women in non-union jobs. #Unions help us #ThriveTogether
  3. The #SCOTUS decision is an attack on unions when we need them most. Elected leaders must make it easier, not harder, for workers to join a #Union so we #ThriveTogether
  4. Court cases funded by the rich and powerful to further rig the economy against working people and try to divide us, will only make us #StrongerTogther! #Union #ThriveTogether
  5. No court case can keep us from sticking together. Unions turn poverty-wage jobs into good jobs. America needs #Union jobs to #ThriveTogether
  6. We’re sticking with our #Union no matter what #SCOTUS says so we all #ThriveTogether.

Here are some sample posts you may wish to use on Facebook:

  • The ultra wealthy and corporate elites hope that today’s Supreme Court decision will further rig the economy and put one more roadblock in the way for those of us who are joining together for good jobs and fair pay. We won’t let them divide us. No matter what any court says, America needs #Union jobs. We know that when we are #StrongerTogether we #ThriveTogether. No matter what #SCOTUS says, we’re going to keep standing up for and winning the change those of us who work for a living need.
  • When union membership is high, entire communities enjoy wages that represent a fair return on their workand greater social and economic mobility. And #unions use their collective voice to advocate for policies that benefit all working and middle class people – like increases to the minimum wage, affordable health care and great public schools.
  • Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. stood with striking sanitation workers in Memphis 50 years ago as they fought for the freedom to join together in a strong #Union and be treated with dignity and respect. He told them, “Freedom is not something that is voluntarily given by the oppressor. It is something that must be demanded by the oppressed.” Remember Dr. King and remember that when we are #StrongerTogether we #ThriveTogether.
  • Because #Unions allow all workers to join together to negotiate with their employers for fair wages and benefits, the wage gap between women and men in unions is dramatically lower than in non-union workplaces – about 9 cents and shrinking. Meanwhile, most non-union women still earn 78 cents for every dollar a man makes.

Thank you for taking action to show your support for CSU-AAUP and your rights to collective bargaining.  By coming together in our union, you – our members – have the strength to raise wages, secure affordable healthcare, improve working conditions, protect quality public higher education, and make life better for not only your families but also your students, and your state.

In Solidarity,

Elena Tapia