On Monday, the University of Michigan’s Lecturers’ Employee Organization released a call to allies for support against the administration’s salary proposal for lecturers.
The LEO is comprised of lecturers from all three U-M campuses. Currently, the minimum salary for a full-time lecturer is $34,500 in Ann Arbor, $28,300 in Dearborn and $27,300 in Flint. The LEO has been bargaining with the University since October for higher wages, better job security and improved benefits.
On Monday night, in response to initial requests from the LEO, the University proposed a $1,000 increase to the starting salary in 2019, $750 in 2020 and $500 in 2021. According to the LEO statement, the University’s proposal also included a 1.5 percent annual raise for Ann Arbor employees, but not Dearborn or Flint lecturers.
“Our members are stunned, insulted, and outraged,” the LEO statement reads. “In the past 14 years, Lecturers have seen a 11 percent overall raise in minimum salary. In that same time period, tuition has increased roughly 90 percent.”
According to the LEO press release, the administration’s proposal Monday night gave the impression lecturers were highly replaceable employees.
“Administration began their proposal by telling us that Lecturers cannot complain about this exploitation because with the current job market, they are more or less disposable,” the statement reads.
In response to the proposal, the LEO is staging a grade-in before the University Board of Regents meeting on Feb. 15. The LEO plans on speaking at the meeting as well and is calling for students, faculty and community members to show support for the LEO by attending the grade-in, joining their action listserv and spreading the word.