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AAUP/AFT-Wisconsin Joint Statement on Wisconsin Biennial Budget

The AAUP and AFT-Wisconsin stand together in condemning the attacks on higher education that the Wisconsin Legislature included in its biennial budget, which Governor Walker signed into law last Monday. We call on the University of Wisconsin Board of Regents and the UW System and campus-level administrations to work with their faculty and academic staff to reconstitute the language previously included in Chapter 36 into system-wide and campus policies.

AFT-Wisconsin release: JFC budget a disaster

Governor Scott Walker’s proposed 2015-17 budget for the state of Wisconsin, introduced earlier this year, was jam-packed with shameful attacks on working Wisconsinites. Since then, Republican majorities on the legislature’s Joint Finance Committee (JFC) have been finding ways to make a bad budget even worse. Now that the JFC has wrapped up budget deliberations, its budget proposal will be taken up by the state Senate and Assembly, then head to Governor Walker’s desk for his signature.  Here's what AFT-Wisconsin President Kim Kohlhaas had to say:

AFT-Wisconsin press release: UW System union members condemn funding cuts, attacks on academic freedom

Madison, WI: Responding to the Wisconsin Joint Finance Committee’s expected vote to slash $250 million in UW System funding and remove legislative protections for academic freedom and shared governance, union members in the UW System condemned the funding cuts and called on System and campus administrations to protect academic freedom. “Today’s move by JFC Republicans to pay for Scott Walker’s tax breaks for his wealthy donors by slashing public education is shameful,” said Eleni Schirmer, a UW-Madison graduate student and co-president of the Teaching Assistants’ Association, AFT local 3220.

UW System Viability, Academic Freedom Facing Serious Threat from Walker Budget Proposals

Madison, WI: Massive budget cuts and fundamental structural changes to the UW System proposed by Wisconsin governor Scott Walker today will lead to a significant reduction in the quality of education for UW System students, AFT-Wisconsin members and leaders predicted. “Scott Walker’s proposal to slash $300 million from the University of Wisconsin System shows that he’s willing to do just about anything as he puts his presidential ambitions above the needs of Wisconsin,” said AFT-Wisconsin President Kim Kohlhaas, a teacher in the Superior School District, in response to Walker’s plan. “He’s scrambling to find money to pay for his irresponsible tax cuts for his wealthy donors, and Wisconsin’s college students will have to pay the price. These cuts to the UW System will almost certainly threaten the ability of current students to graduate on time, and will damage, perhaps irrevocably, the ability of the UW System to attract and retain the best faculty and staff.”

UFAS stands with MGAA in defense of negotiated benefits (Apr-2012)

UFAS President Jim Molenda sent this open letter on April 13, 2012, in solidarity with our sister union, the Milwaukee Graduate Assistants Association (MGAA), AFT Local 2169.

An injury to one is an injury to all: unilateral elimination of negotiated benefits at UW-Milwaukee will set an undesirable precedent for similar steps at other campuses in the UW System.