College of the Redwoods trustees approve faculty contract
The Redwoods Community College District’s Board of Trustees approved a new three-year bargaining agreement with the College of the Redwoods Faculty Organization (CRFO) on March 5, 2019. The new contract includes a three-tiered compensation structure for lab units, which is more equitable to faculty in lab-based programs, and incentives for faculty to report their intent to retire as early as possible to increase the college’s strategic planning capabilities. Additionally, the new agreement simplifies operational language throughout the contract. This new collective bargaining agreement is in effect July 1, 2019 through June 30, 2022.
CRFO Chief Negotiator John Johnston reports that “the CRFO believes this contract is one that helps the college continue to attract and retain high quality faculty and associate faculty without compromising the college’s fiscal sustainability.”
CR President Flamer agrees, stating, “I believe this contract is a fair and equitable agreement that reflects the respect the Board and the administration have for union members and their significant contribution to our community. I want to thank CRFO President Michelle Haggerty, CRFO Chief Negotiator John Johnston and the CRFO bargaining team for their commitment to work with the administration to reach an honorable and fiscally responsible agreement that we can celebrate.”
The college and the faculty union continue to engage in interest-based bargaining, an approach that allows representatives from the faculty union and the District to work as one unified team that collaboratively creates agreements that meet both parties' interests, which fosters collegiality and trust between the faculty and the administration. Johnson explains, “When the faculty and the administration are able to walk out of the negotiation room with a better relationship than they had when they went in, that’s good for the college and for our students.”
In addition to the changes noted above, the three-year contract also includes a new article related to academic freedom, ensuring that College of the Redwoods students’ right to learn and faculty’s ability to educate will not be compromised by politics.