ANSWERS TO FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT A.F.A.
What is the A.F.A.? The A.F.A. stands for the Adjunct Faculty Association. It represents all part-time faculty in the bargaining unit (see below) at Oakton Community College. The A.F.A. is affiliated with the IEA/NEA ( Illinois Education Association/National Education Association
What is the bargaining unit? The bargaining unit consists of all part-time faculty currently teaching 6 or more hours as well as those who are teaching 3 or more hours but have taught 6 or more hours in either of the previous two Fall or Spring semesters.
What about other part-time faculty? Part-time faculty not in the bargaining unit are NOT covered by the contract. However many of the benefits won in contract negotiations, including salary increases, are extended to all part-time faculty teaching credit courses. They are encouraged to take an active role within the Association and to serve on the Board.
In order to cover additional part-time faculty under the contract we would have to hold an election of those faculty to be included, and the administration would have to agree to this. If successful, the new group of faculty would then have to pay the same dues or fair share (see below) as current bargaining unit faculty.
Governance: The leadership of the AFA consists of four executive officers elected by the membership for 2 year terms. Officers may receive released time to perform their duties. In addition to the executive officers, there are several members of the Board appointed by a vote of the executive committee.
History and Purpose: The AFA was the first bargaining unit for part-time faculty in the state of Illinois and was formed over 25 years ago. As a bargaining unit it represents the part-time faculty in negotiations to improve salary, working conditions, and benefits at Oakton. It is also committed to facilitating the on-going professionalization of part-timers through attendance at workshops and conferences.
What Has the AFA accomplished?
In addition, bargaining unit faculty are entitled to
How do I know what the AFA is doing? Every month all part-timers at Oakton receive a newsletter (golden rod) telling them about what is going on. Also, the AFA Board meets once a month and all meetings are open to members. Once each Fall and Spring Semester there is a membership meeting at a local restaurant (open only to members). Finally the AFA has a Website where the current contract, as well as other useful information is posted.
What is the difference between Fair Share and being a Member? AFA is required to represent everyone in the bargaining unit whether or not they are members of AFA. By law AFA is entitled to a Fair Share fee to recover the expenses in administering the contract, so all bargaining unit members will have dues deducted from their paychecks in two installments mid Fall and Spring semesters.
In addition to benefits of the contract members are entitled to vote in AFA officer elections, vote on whether or not to accept a proposed contract, to attend membership dinner meetings free, and to receive a number of benefits from the National Education Association. For those in the bargaining unit the cost of membership is only an additional $15 per Fall/Spring semester. Part-time faculty not in the bargaining unit teaching 3 or more hours may also be members but they will have to pay both the fair share and $15 membership dues. Those part-timers who are members of IEA unions at two or more colleges should contact the union so that fair share will only be deducted at one college. You are NOT a member unless you JOIN.
How do I join? Contact an IEA officer or fill out BOTH a payroll deduction form and an IEA/NEA membership form and mail to Cheryl Brown, Division 4. IEA is only as strong as it's membership. A large membership increases our leverage at the bargaining table and also gives us more delegates at IEA and NEA Representative Assemblies. Please join us today!
What happens if, after I join, I drop out of the bargaining unit? Most people continue their membership. However, if you prefer, you can simply call the AFA office and we will make sure that payroll no longer collects dues.