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Wright State administration responds to threat of faculty union strike


Wright State University’s administration has responded to the faculty union’s creation of a procedure to strike.

The union formalized a process on Wednesday that would allow them to strike if a deal is not reached on a new contract, according to a release from the WSU chapter of American Association of University Professors.

» FIRST REPORT: Wright State faculty contract negotiations stalled

Despite that, the WSU administration released a statement Thursday morning saying that “both practically and legally, a strike is not imminent.”

“Some of the faculty at Wright State, like many public universities in Ohio, are unionized and therefore have the ability to bargain a new collective contract every few years upon the expiration of the prior contract. At times the process has been quick and easy, other times it has been more challenging,” the statement from the university reads. “Regardless, there has never been a strike at Wright State and there has been one short strike at one Ohio public university since the collective bargaining law went into effect.”

» RELATED: Wright State again planning to cut swimming and diving teams after this season

Contract negotiations between Wright State University and its faculty have been stalled since March. The union’s contract expired in June.

The previous contract remains in effect until after a fact-finder’s report is issued. Fact-finding is scheduled for late January.

Wright State AAUP president Martin Kich in an October interview said a strike was a possibility even though the union did not have a process in place to call for one.

» RELATED: Nearly two-thirds of 2016 Ohio college grads have student debt

“We never had a procedure for calling a strike because in the past we always had a cordial relationship with the administration,” Kich said in a statement released after the AAUP-WSU unanimously voted to adopt an amendment to its constitution that creates a strike procedure.

At present, according to the statement, AAUP-WSU represents 584 faculty members. Though a strike process has been formalized, it remains a last resort, Kich said in a statement.

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