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Letter to the Editor: A certified majority of full-time faculty at Miami say they want a union, so why won't Miami LET US VOTE?

As students, staff and faculty start the new school year, the Faculty Alliance of Miami (FAM) continues its efforts to build a better Miami for everyone. With faculty and community support, FAM enjoyed significant success this year, clearing tough hurdles on the way to unionization with room to spare. Now, the state has confirmed that a majority of full-time faculty and librarians support FAM. The administration can do the right thing — and be fair to hundreds of faculty and librarians who deserve the chance to vote on unionization — by accepting FAM's proposed bargaining unit (full-time faculty and librarians) and moving forward with a union vote. Or they can continue to stall — spending more money on legal fees, wasting resources better spent on teaching and learning initiatives on campus.

  • June 3: FAM files for union recognition at State Employment Relations Board (SERB). Miami is given 21 days to respond.

  • June 24: At the last possible moment, Miami files an objection seeking to exclude NTT & librarians from the proposed unit.

  • July 14: SERB verifies that FAM’s cards are evidence of majority support. Miami could decide to enable the election to move forward, but continues its objection.

  • August 8: Lawyers (multiple Miami lawyers, one FAM lawyer) meet with SERB to discuss the objection & FAM’s response. 

  • August 25: We are awaiting word of the next meeting during which Miami will respond to FAM's response.

Enough hoop-jumping. LET US VOTE.

When faculty show collective strength, good things happen for teaching and learning, positively impacting the whole campus community. FAM welcomes the newly collegial tone Miami leadership is setting — it’s a clear response to a faculty united and raising their voices. But replacing a provost or implementing a one-time salary increase is not enough. Faculty deserve a seat at the decision-making table. Let’s build a better Miami together by finishing the work of forming a union. If the administration really cares about faculty, it will stop stalling and LET US VOTE.

We encourage you to get involved — sign the FAM mission, write a testimonial, spread the word about FAM's efforts, raise awareness about structural inequities on campus, visit the FAM website ( and follow FAM on social media at @famiamioh (Instagram, Facebook and Twitter). 

A union contract will enable a more collaborative, transparent and mutually responsive relationship between faculty and the administration. Tell Miami leadership to LET US VOTE.

Dr. Todd Edwards, Department of Teaching, Curriculum and Educational Inquiry

Dr. Shashi Lalvani, Department of Chemical, Paper and Biomedical Engineering

Dr. Theresa Kulbaga, Department of Languages, Literatures and Writing

Dr. Paul Schaeffer, Department of Biology

Dr. Mack Hagood, Department of Media, Journalism & Film

Dr. Cathy Wagner, Department of English

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Dr. Michelle Boone, Department of Biology

Dr. Eric Luczaj, Department of Computer and Information Technology

& all the faculty on the FAM Core Organizing Committee