DATV and Citizen Impact’s Extensive Coverage of the Strike

We are very grateful to DATV and Citizen Impact for providing  extensive coverage of the strike.

We are very grateful to Logan Martinez and Tim Bruce, in particular, for documenting these events with tremendous patience, for giving us the opportunity to express our concerns in more than soundbites, and for personalizing those concerns in a consistently respectful way, even when emotions related to the strike have been very close to the surface.

We encourage you not just to click on these video links but also to visit DATV’s website at:


Two earlier videos related to the background of the strike:


Letter of Support from Becky Higgins, President, Ohio Education Association

oea 1

January 23, 2019

Sara Kilpatrick, Executive Director

Ohio Conference of the American Association of University Professors

222 East Town St., 2W

Columbus, OH 43215


Dear Sara,

On behalf of the 122,000 members of the Ohio Education Association (OEA), I write in solidarity with the Wright State University (WSU) faculty who have been forced to go on strike because of the actions of WSU administration and the Board of Trustees. In the strongest terms possible, we urge the administration to come back to the negotiating table and bargain in good faith.

OEA’s members around the state know that negotiating a fair contract is an important part of standing up for our students. The issues at stake for the Wright State faculty resonate with us all. Class size and workload directly impact our ability to teach and serve our students. Having a real voice in the workplace is the best way to advocate for our students. Earning a fair wage and benefits are what we need and deserve as professionals. Anything less hampers the ability to attract and retain professional educators and hurts our students, families and communities.

Around the country and throughout our state, educators are standing up to demand fair treatment, respect, and the resources they need to support students. Overwhelmingly, the public supports professional educators. So too, we stand with the faculty at Wright State.

Once again, we urge the administration to resume bargaining. The hardworking and dedicated faculty of AAUP-WSU have the full support of our members, their brothers and sisters, throughout Ohio.

In Solidarity,

Becky Higgins

President, Ohio Education Association



University of Illinois at Chicago United Faculty Stands with Wright State Faculty

u of illinois chicago

Dear Colleagues at Wright State University,

The faculty union at UIC is in full and steadfast support of striking faculty and students at Wright State University. You are on the right side of justice in this struggle, fighting for the soul of higher education.

Your courage to withhold your labor, which we know is hard to do, is really the only thing you can do in order to protect and improve your working conditions – your students’ learning conditions – when the administration stops negotiating with you. We all know that your strike, as opposed to their reaction to it, is truly right for students and Wright State University. And, no matter what they say, the university administration and trustees are responsible for the shutdown and for ending the strike.

Stand Strong!

Solidarity forever!

You will win this!

Janet Smith, President

UIC United Faculty, Local #6456 AAUP, AFT-IFT, AFL-CIO




Letter of Support from Chris Mabe, President, OCSEA/AFSCME


January 23, 2019

Sara Kilpatrick, Executive Director
Ohio Conference of the American Association of University Professors
222 East Town St., 2W
Columbus, OH 43215


Dear Sara Kilpatrick,

On behalf of the largest state employees’ union in Ohio with 30,0000 members, we write in support of your efforts to bring the Wright State University administration back to the table to negotiate a fair contract in good faith.

We know that efforts to weaken collective bargaining by making unilateral changes or taking away your ability to negotiate provisions such as health care do not serve the interests of your bargaining unit members. Nor does weakening collective bargaining in general serve workers throughout Ohio.

We know what happened when lawmakers tried to take away our ability to bargain our union contracts under Senate Bill 5. We worked hard to educate Ohioans about the importance of collective bargaining for Ohio’s economic prosperity. And has a result, Ohioans spoke out at the voting booth in large numbers against that attack.

When anyone’s rights at the bargaining table are weakened, it hurts all Ohioans, not just your union’s. When unions are strong, and when workers rise together, Ohio is made stronger.

While many public sector unionized employees were hurt by the recession in 2008, the economy has rebounded according to all economic measures, and workers around the country are finally getting their due. That’s why it’s particularly troublesome that Wright State is taking this hard-line tactic that imposes furlough days, takes away your ability to negotiate health care and doesn’t allow some wage “make up” given the austerity of the previous years.

We call on your administration and board of trustees do what is right and come back to the table for further negotiations.

Know that thousands of Ohio public workers support your efforts at getting back to the table to negotiate a better contract and are standing by your side during this trying time, including the Ohio Civil Service Employees Association.

Please let us know how we can help in your efforts.

In Solidarity,

Chris Mabe



Letter of Support from AFT President Randi Weingarten


January 23, 2019

Rudy Fichtenbaum, President

American Association of University Professors

1133 Nineteenth St., NW, Suite 200

Washington, DC 20036


American Federation of Teachers

555 New Jersey Ave. N .W

Washington, DC 20001



On behalf of the 1.7 million member American Federation of Teachers, I am writing to express our wholehearted  support for the  Wright State University faculty and its  chapter of the American Association of University Professors in your strike for a fair contract and the teaching and  learning  environment  your  students  deserve. You are striking for nothing less than the future of  your  students,  academic  freedom and your university .

Defending academic freedom and the free exchange of ideas on campus has always been a core value for the AFT and our higher education members in particular. The threats to academic freedom and educational quality are numerous, spawned by the growing number of faculty members being forced to work off the tenure track. And shared governance is another one of our values; it is democracy in action, ensuring that academic decisions are made for academic-not political, commercial or bureaucratic-reasons.

Your university is attempting to impose a contract on faculty that takes direct aim at all these principles, and we stand with you in your fight against it.

This imposition would unquestionably shift Wright away from full-time, tenure­-track faculty to an underpaid and under-supported contingent instructional workforce lacking due process and the freedom to teach. The imposed contract would disable shared governance, allowing the university to exercise unilateral powers on issues such as faculty workloads and merit pay. Add in skyrocketing healthcare costs for employees, and the result of this contract will be a teaching force at Wright that is silenced, stretched thin, stripped of time for scholarly research, and desperately struggling to earn a living and afford healthcare.

Life under such a contract will not enable you to give your students the kind of high-quality education they come to this university hoping to find. It will not attract topnotch faculty and staff to Wright University. It will not leave even a shred of the academic freedom and love of learning that define higher education and make such an education valuable.

Faculty have offered significant financial concessions to ameliorate a financial crisis at the university that you did nothing to cause. You have endured 24 months of obstructionism, with the university stonewalling your continued attempts to negotiate, and it has chosen to impose a contract rather than come back to the bargaining table. You have waited to strike until striking was truly your last resort.

The AFT and our member from coast to coast stand with you. We applaud your courage and your dedication to doing what”s best for your students and your university. We stand with you in your fight to protect the essential principles that lie at the heart of a quality higher education.


Randi Weingarten



cc:  Martin Kich, President, Wright State University AAUP

Julie Schmid, Executive Director, AAUP

Alyssa Picard, AFT Higher Ed




Statement of Support from the Faculty Board at the University of Dayton

Dear Colleagues and Members of the Community,

The Faculty Board at the University of Dayton are the elected representatives of the members of our Faculty Association, which comprises all full-time faculty. We are writing to express our support for the faculty at Wright State University who are demanding a fair contract, and urge the WSU administration to negotiate in good faith to end this dispute.

The AAUP-WSU has been attempting to negotiate a fair contract since January 2017. We are concerned that Wright State University’s administrators are undermining the basic job security provided to other faculty in Ohio and the nation. We are also concerned with the failure of administrators to compromise or participate in a fair collective bargaining process. The disputes at WSU will not only have a dire impact on students, but the campus and community at large will also suffer because they rely on the important role that the institution plays in the Miami Valley.

We stand in solidarity with our WSU colleagues in recognition of the importance of their mission to provide quality teaching, research, and service. For those of you interested in supporting Wright State faculty, you can find the latest news and information on how to do so below:,


Signed, University of Dayton’s Faculty Board

Faculty Board Membership (Spring 2019):

Atif Abueida, Mathematics (At Large Rep)

Christopher Agnew, chair, History (Arts and Humanities Rep)

Maureen Anderson (Libraries Rep)

Philip Appiah-Kubi (Engineering Rep)

Debbie Archambeault, Accounting (Business School Rep)

Sam Dorf, Music (At Large Rep)

Denise James, Philosophy (At Large Rep)

Caroline Waldron Merithew, History (Arts and Humanities Rep)

Leno Pedrotti, secretary, Physics (Natural Sciences Rep)

Blake Watson (School of Law Rep)

Andrea Wells, Music (Full-time Non-tenure Track Rep)

Catherine Zois, Psychology (Social Sciences Rep)



Statement of Solidarity with Wright State University Faculty from PSC at CUNY

The Professional Staff Congress (PSC), the trade union of 30,000 faculty and professional staff at the nation’s largest public urban university, City University of New York, stand in support of our colleagues in the AAUP Wright State University faculty union in their decision to strike to defend union rights and working conditions.

We strongly condemn the Wright State Board of Trustees’ unilateral imposition of new terms of employment as an egregious attack on the union’s fundamental bargaining rights. We also support our colleagues’ firm opposition to the austerity terms that diminishes salaries, health care, and job security.

We at the PSC stand in solidarity with our sisters and brothers at Wright State University in their fight for a fair contract, and wish them every success.



Statement of Support from Faculty Union at Columbus State Community College

Columbus State Community College Faculty Union Stands With Wright State Faculty

The faculty union at Columbus State Community College supports our colleagues at Wright State University.

Mismanagement at the university should not be used as an excuse to punish faculty and deprive students of a quality education.

We encourage the Columbus State faculty to support our colleagues on the picket lines and in any other appropriate way.

Tom Shanahan

President, Columbus State Education Association


Letter from Earlham College AAUP to President Schrader

21 January 2019


President Cheryl Schrader and Members of the Board of Trustees of Wright State University:


I am writing to urge the Board of Trustees and the administration of Wright State University to begin to negotiate in good faith with the Wright State chapter of the American Association of University Professors (AAUP), as doing so is in both the short-term and the long-term interests of the entire Wright State campus.

The Board of Trustees has not been negotiating in good faith thus far.

In order to negotiate in good faith, there must first be a recognition that those who are being most directly negatively affected by the current financial situation—i.e., the teaching faculty, the staff, and the students—had little to no role in creating this crisis, and that the Board of Trustees bears the far higher burden of responsibility.

The Board of Trustees must acknowledge that its own outside labor attorney’s brief to the fact-finder painted a hyperbolically bleak picture of the state of the university, which was later—given the report’s release to the media—publicly walked back by the Board.  Why, then, after such a public walk-back, is the Board drawing on these same already disavowed hyperbolic claims to try to argue the merits of the Board’s stance in current contract negotiations?  This is inevitably what happens when directors are strategically attempting to portray a crisis in order to justify cuts.  The Board of Trustees misplayed its hand, and others are paying the price for this.

The budget woes faced by Wright State University are almost wholly the fault of the Board.  The Board in the past four years has squandered more than $150 million: more than $130 million in reserves went to non-academic initiatives and enterprises, and at least $20 million spent on off-campus properties.  These funds were squandered because the Board made a gamble that did not pay off: the investments not only never produced the promised additional revenue streams, but they have also become huge drains on the university budget.  I am all too well aware of this dynamic from having seen it up close in a number of college settings.  This is what happens when administrators do not make decisions on the basis of sound pedagogical reasoning and refuse to listen to those who know best what will serve the academic needs of the community: current faculty members and current students.  The members of the Board of Trustees are also implicated in some conflicts of interest in having chosen these investments over other, more sustainable and wise investments that would have served Wright State.

The compensation and benefits of the full-time teaching faculty constitute a mere 17 percent of the university’s budget. I understand that that percentage has been very consistent over the last ten years—even over the last two years when the total budget has been cut by tens of millions.  Indeed, since January 2016, the faculty has taken a net loss of 92 full-time faculty positions. So, spending on faculty lines has clearly not created the budget problems, and those problems cannot be solved in any significant way through the faculty contract.

As a member of AAUP at nearby Earlham College, I stand with the members of the AAUP chapter at Wright State University and hereby call upon the members of the Board of Trustees and of the administration who bear the responsibility for this crisis to a) acknowledge their responsibility as such; b) begin to negotiate in good faith, on the basis of such an acknowledgment; and c) consider immediate resignation, if the above conditions cannot be met.


Joanna Swanger, Ph.D.

Associate Professor and Director, Peace & Global Studies Program

Earlham College

Richmond, IN 47374

(765) 983-1660 /




Resolution of Support from the Greene County Democratic Party

Greene County Democratic Party

10 South Detroit Street

Xenia, Ohio

Resolution Supporting the Wright State University Chapter of the AAUP

Whereas, at the January 17, 2019, meeting of the Executive Committee of the Greene County Democratic Party (GCDP), the facts of the ongoing labor dispute between the Wright State University Chapter of the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) and WSU Administration were presented to over forty members of the Executive Committee; and

Whereas, continuing reports show the WSU Administration is not bargaining in good faith and is, moreover, seeking to impose unfair conditions on faculty members that will harm not only their professional careers but the educational standards of the University and the quality of instruction provided to its students – namely, effectively eliminating tenure and continuing appointments, nullifying workload agreements, imposing arbitrary furloughs and ill-defined “merit pay,” among other issues; and

Whereas, WSU Administration has refused the AAUP request for continued negotiations until the union withdraw its unfair labor practice complaint with prejudice, insisting on negotiating the nextcontract while holding the AAUP hostage to the implemented, draconian terms of the disputed contract;

Now, therefore, be it resolved that:

The Greene County Democratic Party Executive Committee, by unanimous vote, supports the Wright State University Chapter of the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) in the current labor dispute, and members of the Party will provide active, ongoing support to striking members, if AAUP deems such action necessary.

The GCDP further calls on the Wright State University Administration to return to the bargaining table in good faith and negotiate with the AAUP to find a solution that respects the rights of dedicated faculty while maintaining the integrity of this respected community institution.