Hundreds of faculty members at Howard University in Washington, D.C., say they are threatening to go on strike next week over complaints of unfair working conditions.
As journalist Chuck Modi reported, the instructors held a protest on Wednesday (March 16) in which they announced that they will be going on strike if they are unable to come to an agreement with higher-ups at the college.
“Non-tenure-track faculty are trying to ensure that our basic needs are met,” one staff member said at the demonstration.“We’re trying to make sure that we’re having adequate pay, that we have job stability, that we’re appreciated and valued as professors and not disposable. And we’re gonna make sure that our demands are met.”
“Howard non-tenure-track faculty is the lowest-paid HBCU faculty considering the cost of living,” he went on. “Some non-tenure-track faculty are being paid $40,000 or less [to live in D.C.]. It’s difficult for faculty to stay here to continue to teach.”
As another faculty member explained, instructors at Howard were scheduled to meet with leadership on Friday (March 18) but have heard nothing from them since. In the event that no agreement is reached by then, they are threatening an unfair labor strike, which will begin on Wednesday (March 23).
“The university’s leadership has made clear that a better working environment and a better learning environment is unimportant to them…,” the professor said. “We ask you to stand with us in solidarity. We seek to stand with you in solidarity. These have been individual fights for far too long, and we have not seen the movement any of us need. So now we all need to come together and get the movement that we require.”
According to videos from the protest, HU’s faculty members were supported by students, who had their own battles with the college’s executives months ago. As reported by REVOLT, residents at the HBCU staged a three-week-long protest over poor living conditions.
See Chuck Modi’s tweets below.
“Howard Teachers Matter”
“Black Students Matter”
— ChuckModi (@ChuckModi1) March 16, 2022