“We must stick together and hold the line,” Kich wrote in the email. “We must be strong and unified for our students and our community, because what we do now will become the WSU legacy for generations to come.”
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The possible strike comes after the WSU board of trustees decision to implement terms moves faculty union members into a “uniform” health care plan, maintains current rules of retrenchment, includes no pay raises and would allow faculty to be furloughed as part of “cost savings days.” In its strike notice, the union took issue with the furlough policy, changes to health care, new provisions for promotions and tenure appointment, workload and a merit pay system.
Wright State’s finances have contributed to trouble at the negotiating table. The university reduced its spending by around $53 million in fiscal year 2018 in an attempt to begin correcting years of overspending.
Board of trustees chairman Doug Fecher has said the university’s position in negotiations has been focused on reaching an agreement that would help make the university financially sustainable in the long-term and would prevent increased costs to students. In an open letter to the community, union leaders have asked people to contact Fecher to tell him to continue negotiating with the union for a faculty contract.
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