Dear Colleague:

Welcome to Santa Monica College! You should have received a copy of the collective bargaining agreement (also known as "the contract") when you were hired. If you have any questions about the contract, or if you need a hard copy of it, please call the Association office at (310) 434-4394 and we can help you.

The SMC Faculty Association is the exclusive representative for all tenured, probationary and part-time faculty (excluding those teaching in "Community Services") and negotiates on behalf of faculty in areas related to compensation, benefits and working conditions. We help faculty file grievances against the district if the contract has been violated, provide education related to retirement options, health benefits, leaves, and evaluation procedures, and provide guidance and support if the district is investigating you for alleged wrong-doing related to your employment at SMC.

The contract states that all faculty "as a condition of continued employment" must "either become a dues-paying member of the Association or pay the Association a service fee." This specific provision was ratified in a special election of all faculty, union members and nonmembers, full-time and hourly. However, the recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling (Janus v. AFSCME Council 32, see our Janus page for more information) has invalidated that section of the contract. From now on, there are only two possible statuses for SMC faculty:

1. Members. Members receive all the privileges of membership, including the right to vote and hold union office. Most faculty, including a majority of both full-time and hourly faculty, are members. Very few of your colleagues have chosen to refrain from joining the Association. To become a member, you must fill out a membership form. If you do not fill out a membership form you become an agency fee payer by default.

2. Non-members. You cannot vote in any Faculty Association elections or represent your department in the Representative Assembly. Effectively, your ability to fully participate in shaping and determining your working conditions is reduced. Additionally, by not becoming a member, you are placing all the expense and effort for safeguarding your working conditions and negotiating for contract improvements onto your colleagues. One never knows when the support of the Faculty Association will be needed - a student complaint, a change unilaterally imposed change in working hours, help in navigating the sick leave provisions if a family member falls ill. Think of any benefit that you value through your employment at SMC: the Faculty Association is directly responsible for that benefit.

If you have not already signed up as a Faculty Association member, please join over 1000 of your colleagues in supporting the work the Faculty Association does on your behalf. A membership form is downloadable here. Membership gives you a say in contract ratification, selection of officers, and the right to hold office. We urge you to become a member and to become active in letting us know how best to meet your needs.

If you have questions, please call us at (310) 434-4394.

Yours sincerely,

Peter Morse

SMC Faculty Association President