Knoxville, TN - After more than two years of campaigning by United Campus Workers, on Monday, March 1 at the monthly Faculty Senate meeting at the Univers

UCW has launched an open letter calling on Governor Bill Lee to include higher education employees in COVID-19 vaccine distribution plans. 

Temporary and adjunct contracts are forcing many of our best teaching professionals to work in increasingly exploitative conditions. In the face of these conditions, UCW’s Contingent & Adjunct Caucus has been busy organizing a campaign to win justice on campuses across the state. The caucus has just launched a survey to collect data about Tennessee adjunct and contingent working conditions. If you are an adjunct or contingent faculty member, please fill out the survey! If not, please pass it along to colleagues who are.

Access the survey here, complete it and pass it along to colleagues if you haven't already. Post a flyer about it in your building! Let's collect as much data as we can! And be sure to check out our blog on these issues, Higher-Ed Hand Tennessee.

After months of lobbying legislators, making phone calls, sending emails, and organizing public events from the Capitol Steps to campuses across the state, we now know that the new state budget includes a 2.5% raise for all higher education workers. We know that UT workers will again receive a minimum of at least $1,000. These are positive steps forward that have only happened through our work to win fair pay for all campus workers. But pushes for flat dollar raises, living wages and equal pay for equal work in higher education are ramping up.

We need your involvement in these efforts. Visit the union’s webpage and contact us today at [email protected] to find out how you can help! And spread the word on social media here!

Percentage raises are unfair because they disproportionately benefit the people who already make the most. While the President would receive nearly $10,500, many secretaries, custodians, and teaching staff would get as little as $1000. Over 30% of Tennesseans working full time make less than the poverty line. In a time of unprecedented income inequality, we shouldn't be using our community tax dollars to make the rich richer while the poor get poorer. What we need is a flat dollar raise.

Knoxville was rated the third worst city in the US for working women, with a 38% wage gap between women and men's incomes. A 2005 study found that UT women faculty made only 75% of their male peers' salary. We know that many of UT's lowest paid positions are worked primarily by women. Percentage raises will only worsen the gendered wage gap. Flat dollar raises will start to close it, helping everyone who doesn't make enough to get by, while also overcoming unequal pay to women for their work.


Contact President Joe DiPietro: Contact Chancellor John Morgan:
865-974-2251 615-366-4403
[email protected] [email protected]  
twitter @utpresidentjoe  



Last year, a minimum raise was provided by both systems, 2500 TBR workers who made less than $12.82 an hour received at least $750, and at UT, workers won increases in base pay to $8.50 and a flat minimum raise of $1000 for other employees, providing UT's lowest paid workers almost $2500 more a year.

These were important steps. It would be a shame for campus workers to see less than these minimum raises in 2012. With rising food and gas prices, and higher out-of-pocket insurance expenses, the cost of working for higher education is more than many UT and TBR workers can afford. All of us have the human right to earn at least a living wage.

United Campus Workers is urging all higher education employees to contact our system chiefs, and ask that they distribute this raise as an equal dollar amount. It is the decent thing to do.

Contact UT President DiPietro: HERE

Contact TBR Chancellor Morgan: HERE

Take the survey on our Spring & Summer activities here today!

There will be an interfaith prayer vigil for Tennessee Tech, President Bob Bell, and Tech custodians on MONDAY, FEBRUARY 13, 5pm on the Tech Quad. As many of you may have read, the university has taken the next step towards outsourcing custodial jobs to Service Solutions, part of the UK-based conglomerate Compass Group, and are now in negotiations with them. We invite you to join us on MONDAY, February 13th at 5 PM (CENTRAL) on the Quad to pray:
*For leaders to make the right decision and keep custodians in the Tech family,
*For custodians to have strength and courage, and
*For faculty, staff, and students who will also be affected by this decision. The university isn't outsourcing just a group of people, they are outsourcing our family.

Off-campus folks can find parking along 8th and 9th St or Jefferson Ave (parallel to Dixie Ave). The Quad runs between Derryberry Hall (William L Jones Dr off Dixie Ave) and 7th St.

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