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2-Day Faculty Strike Is Set to Begin on Tuesday at U. of Illinois at Chicago

Faculty members at the University of Illinois at Chicago are scheduled to begin a two-day walkout on Tuesday, after failing to reach a contract agreement with administrators in 18 months of negotiations, according to a union announcement and reports in the Chicago newspapers. The union, UIC United Faculty, was certified in 2012 and represents some 1,150 full-time tenured and nontenured faculty members.

Joseph J. Persky, a professor of economics and head of the union, said a key issue in the talks was pay, especially for nontenured lecturers. The union wants their minimum pay to be raised to $45,000; it’s set at $30,000 now. “We’re looking to make them real active members of their departments, as opposed to being treated like academic gypsies,” Mr. Persky told the Chicago Sun-Times.

While hundreds of classes are likely to be canceled during the strike, those taught by graduate assistants will not be affected, a campus spokesman said. Graduate assistants are in a separate bargaining unit and have a no-strike clause in their contract. The schools of medicine, dentistry, and pharmacy also will not be affected.

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