Subject: Grievance Policy Ballot
From: Stephen Montgomery-Smith <stephen@math.missouri.edu>
Date: Oct 9, 2008
To: Various

Dear Faculty,

You may have already received a paper ballot from Faculty Council, suggesting changes to the Grievance Process. The MU chapter of the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) strongly opposes these changes.

There will be a Faculty Meeting on Monday, October 13th, at 3:30 in Jesse Wrench Auditorium for a discussion of these proposed changes.

1) The revisions change the composition of the panel evaluating the validity of grievances from a panel of five faculty members to a panel of two faculty members with one upper-level administrator. Having an administrator on the panel that evaluates alleged violations of administrators creates the perception of vulnerability of faculty to administrative retaliation for filing the grievance. In addition the dynamics of two faculty members and one administrator on the panel could also lead to a tendency to water down conclusions about administrative violations of faculty rights. In the event that a faculty member may need to go to court because the faculty panel remedies have not been implemented the ruling of the grievance panel can provide strong evidence on behalf of the faculty member in court.

2) The discovery process through which documents important to the grievant and respondent (administrative representative) to support their arguments has been changed in the proposed ballot revisions. In the proposed revisions the panel of two faculty members and one administrator gather documents. In the existing pilot grievance process the documents are gathered by a neutral Investigating Offiers (IO). Based on the experiences of faculty who have filed grievances having this neutral IO was very important to their feeling safe to ask for certain documents and in having them obtained by the IO rather than if they had to obtain them through panel members that include an administrator.

To maintain the standard or our professions it is essential that faculty have autonomy over our research, teaching and assessing violations that prohibit us from performing our professional duties. PLEASE VOTE NO ON THE PROPOSED REVISIONS TO THE CURRENT GRIEVANCE PROCESS.

Eddie Adelstein, President
Victoria Johnson and Stephen Montgomery-Smith, Co-Vice Presidents
Rainer Glaser, AAUP representative to Faculty Council
Haskell Taub, Executive Committee member
http://aaup.missouri.edu
Next meeting: Oct 11, 10:00-Noon, S203 Memorial Union