Advocacy and Action

Vote “Yes” on Proposition 1

Proposition 1 is a proposed change to the state’s constitution that would correct a decades-old unjust flaw in our laws and FINALLY give small city school districts across New York state the same opportunities as their rural and suburban counterparts.

Right now, the more than 200,000 students that attend schools in small city districts — six in ten of whom are considered economically disadvantaged — can’t benefit from the borrowing power available to rural and suburban districts. This means fewer new schools or facilities, fewer repairs and improvements, and fewer opportunities. A YES vote on Proposition 1 rights this wrong, promotes fairness, supports students & families, and lifts up communitie

Current law hurts students that are most in need across the state. NYSUT strongly believes we can do better, and we strongly support voting YES on Proposition 1.

Advocacy and Action

Rutgers Contract Fight

Dear Colleagues,

As I write this, thousands of Rutgers University faculty, gradate workers, postdocs and staff are fighting for a fair contract, nine months after the previous agreement expired. The situation is escalating, and the three campus unions that represent these workers are asking for our support.

UUP stands in solidarity with our union colleagues at Rutgers University. We strongly and loudly support them in their fight for a fair contract, which recognizes their hard work and dedication to their students and to the university.

To that end, I am asking you to please sign an open letter to Rutgers President Jonathan Holloway, written by a group of distinguished scholars from around the country. You can do so by clicking HERE. You can read the letter HERE. Though Holloway has indicated that he may not seek an injunction to stop the unions’ job actions, let’s make sure by our voices that he doesn’t change his mind! I’ve signed it and I encourage you to do so as well!

I’m also sharing a link to the Rutgers Strike & Solidarity Fund, which is HERE.

Please show your support for our Rutgers colleagues by signing the letter and sharing this email to your friends, family and coworkers.

In solidarity,


Frederick E. Kowal, Ph.D.


United University Professions

Advocacy and Action General Town Hall

Sign Up Today – Legislative Agenda Town Hall

From Fred Kowal, UUP President

As you may know, our Outreach Committee will be hosting two virtual town hall meetings to gather input as part of the development of our 2023 Legislative Agenda. The first one will be held this Friday (10/21) at noon, with a second being held next Tuesday (10/25) at 6 pm.

Please click the link below to register:

2023 Legislative Agenda Town Hall Registration Form:

If you are unable to attend either of these meetings you can submit ideas for UUP’s Legislative Agenda through our online portal here:

We had many successes last year due to the hard work of our members. And we have even greater opportunities to move our institutions forward if we work together. I encourage you to be active, participate in our advocacy efforts, and add your voice in advocating for our union and our common interests. Your ideas and suggestions are critical for us to create a comprehensive agenda that will gather political support across New York.

Advocacy and Action General

NYSUT Statewide Member Organizing Institute, Summer 2022

Hey, NYSUT Members in New York State! We want YOU to be a part of the plan to build the strongest union in history. Join the NYSUT Member Organizing Institute. With attacks on public schools, colleges, and workers coming from both the state and federal level, it’s sometimes challenging to have your voice heard and to make a difference.  That’s why NYSUT founded the Member Organizing Institute. Launched in the summer of 2017, we are rapidly building our statewide network of member organizers who will take a leading role in the campaign to promote our members’ rights and fight for educational justice!

Program Requirements

Successful applicants should feel comfortable having one-to-one conversations with members of NYSUT at their homes (the work you do will be in the region where you live or work). These conversations aim to be deeply engaging and build a long-lasting relationship between members and their union.

The NYSUT Statewide Member Organizing Institute requires participants to commit to all aspects of the program.

In particular, all participants will be expected to:

  • Complete either 12 or 18 shifts (4 hours each) over the 12 week duration of the program.
  • Attend (1) one of (4) four multi day training sessions:
    • June 28 & 29, Rochester Regional Office, Rochester NY
    • July 5 & 6, Nassau NYSUT Regional Office, Long Island, NY
    • July 7 & 8, Sleepy Hollow Hotel & Conference Center, Tarrytown NY
    • July 8, 9, & 10, NYSUT Headquarters, Latham NY
  • Accept observation and constructive feedback from NYSUT Organizers.
  • Be comfortable with the basic navigation of a smartphone.
  • Be on their feet walking for most of their shift, including in inclement weather and after dark. Driving between houses may be required as well.
  • Because we will be visiting members at their home, participants must be vaccinated or provide weekly negative COVID tests.

Shifts & Compensation

Members accepted to participate in the NYSUT Member Organizing Institute will receive $25 an hour as well as reimbursement for mileage and tolls.

Apply Today

The deadline for applying to the NYSUT Member Organizing Institute is June 10, 2022.

Link to Apply:


Please email Megan O’Brien:

Advocacy and Action Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Say Gay Anyway – Call To Action

This week in Florida, Gov. Ron DeSantis signed his hateful and mislabeled Parental Rights in Education bill, also known as “Don’t Say Gay/Don’t Say Trans,” into law. AFT member and Manatee County kindergarten teacher Cory Bernaert felt its real-world effects even before the bill was signed.

As you well know, building relationships with our students is a vital part of our work. To build those relationships, we often talk about our lives and our shared experiences―spouses, kids, pets, what we did over the holidays and so on. This bill makes it nearly impossible for LGBTQIA+ educators and students alike to share and be who they are in their workplaces and schools. Cory is happily partnered, but if students ask what he did on the weekend, he can’t say he and his partner went paddleboarding. He can’t even explain what the word partner means. He can’t answer any questions about himself. His students who have LGBTQIA+ parents aren’t able to share their home life with their peers and their teacher. The safe and welcoming environment Cory has cultivated in his classroom has been put significantly at risk.

Like any educator, or American for that matter, has the right, Cory voiced his concerns. He spoke out eloquently against how this harmful legislation will impact his ability to teach and his students’ ability to learn. He was met almost immediately with abuse from some people on the right wing, who are trying to paint him as some monster. Fox News even included him by name in a segment attacking gay teachers. Anyone who knows Cory knows he is a gifted, wonderful teacher and human being.

Why are his detractors doing this? The same reason as DeSantis. They think fearmongering helps them politically. Cory is just one of many Floridians who have experienced these kinds of attacks since the bill has been put into effect. This abuse and bullying is hateful and threatens the safety and well-being of educators like Cory.

Educators are trusted as professionals who should be able to focus on teaching and creating an environment where all students feel safe to learn, thrive and recover from the disruptions of the pandemic. And rather than undermining LGBTQIA+ educators, politicians should be working to make sure our public schools are provided with the resources and supports they need, from academics to mental health services.

Parents and educators agree: We will not stand for this kind of hate and discrimination. That is why, in partnership with PFLAG, the AFT has started a petition to voice our strong opposition to DeSantis’ harmful bill that will affect one of the most important parts of teaching: the link between teachers and students. That is unacceptable, and we will continue to fight against it.

Let’s show them that people across the country―whether parents, educators, healthcare workers or allies―support all families and all teachers, including LGBTQIA+ teachers. Let’s make sure every LGBTQIA+ educator and student in Florida hears us today.

Solidarity is an action word. This is our moment to stand with Cory and every LGBTQIA+ educator in Florida.

Advocacy and Action General

Take Action NOW to Support Part Time Members!

Our chapter is organizing for improved conditions for our part time members. A huge amount of teaching at this college is conducted by adjuncts, and we have a large number of faculty and professionals on part time lines.  They are our most vulnerable members. We will be developing demands from the administration that they stop the exploitation of contingent labor, and treat these employees with the respect that they deserve.  Stand up for our fellow UUP members and help make a better workplace for them a reality!

To start, we are demanding that the administration eliminate the use of temporary appointments.  The SUNY Board of Trustees is clear on the appropriateness of its use.  If you do not know, a temp appointment offers no job security at all. Members can be told today is their last day. With a term appointment, a part time member will receive at least a 45-day notice of non-renewal of their contract.  Even that is ridiculously low, so it’s the least the administration can do for a large set of their employees.   Don’t you agree?

We have drafted a petition to present at next month’s LM Meeting.  We need hundreds of signatures—so please sign NOW:

Sign the Petition to End the Use of Temporary Appointments:

Thank you and in solidarity,

Pamela Malone, UUP Empire State College Chapter President