Members of the faculty were urged to sign Collective Bargaining Authorization Cards for a petition that will permit its members to be part of a the United Faculty of Florida union by Nov. 15.
The union’s goal is to get the petition approved before the new board of trustees becomes a public entity on Jan. 1, 2003.
Its current collective bargaining agreement, which ends Jan. 6, 2003, was established with the former Board of Regents in 2001.
The Board of Regents has since been abolished and university faculty and the union are unsure of what will happen when faculty and staff are no longer on state payroll.
“With the new employee, the board of trustees, the current collective bargaining agreement doesn’t apply,” said Gerald Beal, the vice president of the university chapter of the UFF.
“The university is now being thrust into uncharted territory and an uncertain climate.”
According to Beal, the UFF has already asked President Gainous and the board of trustees to continue bargaining with them after the current agreement expires.
The university’s administration said it will not do so unless the faculty and staff officially elect the UFF as their agent.
He said without a bargaining agent the new board would have the right to make any changes they see fit in their ten-