Rutgers Health Heroes Deserve a Contract

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Dear President Jonathan Holloway:

1400 faculty at Rutgers University Biomedical Health Science (RBHS) are on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic. They are epidemiology faculty embedded in the NJ Department of Health. They are physicians in hospitals tending to ICU patients at great personal risk. They are building PPE on 3D printers. They are also developing Rutgers’s new saliva based COVID-19 test that has been billed a “game changer.” They are all indispensable in the war against this pandemic.

Rutgers University President Robert Barchi stated “We are witnessing real acts of heroism in our hospitals and clinics, and our own clinicians at Rutgers are among those heroes.”

However, after almost 2 years, Rutgers has failed to reach a contract with the heroes’ union, the AAUP-BHSNJ. This contract would support the faculty heroes in many ways, including revamping health and safety measures, clarifying the role of family leave/parental leave, and by reducing gender pay inequity.

Many of these common sense solutions are already contained in many other Rutgers union contracts.

While many local area hospitals have announced “hero pay," Rutgers instead insists on being able to cut faculty salaries by as much 5% for people it deems "unprofessional."

It is openly considering layoffs and detenuring as way to save money. 

Tell Rutgers health science faculty deserve honor and respect, not cuts and callousness!