As academics, we are trained to study the world around us.
So here is what the research says about unions.

How unions benefit faculty

Adjunct faculty won salary increases at every institution we looked at….Ninety-seven percent of the collective-bargaining agreements in our sample provided increased job security for contingent faculty. Kristen Edwards and Kim Tolley, Chronicle of Higher Education

How unions benefit students

At most institutions (83 percent of those we examined), adjunct faculty members have also won increased resources to support their teaching and advising of students. Kristen Edwards and Kim Tolley, Chronicle of Higher Education

How the Duke Faculty Union has helped faculty

When M.J. Sharp became an instructor at Duke University in 2012, the $7,500 she earned for one course was just enough after taxes to cover her annual health-care premium. She fought for more classes and university health insurance. It took months to secure four classes, but Sharp still had no assurance the university would invite her back from one year to the next….For Sharp at Duke, the ratification of the university’s first adjunct union contract in 2017 meant a pay raise to $8,100 per course. She also secured a three-year contract and access to money for professional development.” Danielle Douglas-Gabriel, Washington Post

Why faculty need unions

With courses that need to be taught every semester led by an interchangeable set of adjuncts, the schools seem to be doing just what trucking companies, housecleaning services, and now app-driven businesses such as Uber and Lyft have been accused of doing: misclassifying workers as contractors. Especially when a teacher is asked to carry out similar responsibilities as full-time permanent staff but for less than half the salary, there may be grounds to believe that universities and colleges are evading their legal obligations as employers. And with the over representation of women in these jobs, it seems possible that many of these universities could be violating not only labor laws but civil-rights laws as well.” Caroline Frederickson, The Atlantic

How unions benefit workers

New evidence shows that unions played a major role in reducing income inequality in the United States in the decades when organized labor was strong.” Susan Dynarski, New York Times

Read more about faculty unions

The adjunctification of the American university

Caroline Fredrickson argues in The Atlantic that there is “no excuse” for how universities treat adjuncts

Former Duke faculty member talks about the death of his profession

The benefits of faculty unions

The Chronicle of Higher Education explains how unions help adjuncts

The American Prospect discusses the benefits of faculty unions

The Duke Faculty Union in the news

Duke adjunct faculty vote to unionize

DFU reaches union agreement with Duke administration

DFU member M.J. Sharp talks about her experience in the Washington Post

Victories at other campuses

Our neighbors at Elon vote to unionize

Miami Dade professors win the right to organize