Skip to main content

Provost's Letter on Election

July 19, 2016

Dear Colleagues,

Today, the National Labor Relations Board Regional Office counted ballots cast in the election held to determine whether the non-tenure-track faculty would be represented by the Service Employees International Union in connection with their employment at Northwestern. As you may have learned, the election results are not final due to the fact that there were a sufficient number of challenged ballots to affect the results of the election. The vast majority of the challenged ballots were challenged by the SEIU.

As a result, we anticipate the NLRB Regional Office will schedule a hearing that will begin sometime in the next couple weeks. The hearing will determine which of the challenged voters were eligible to vote in the election, and whose ballots therefore should be opened and counted, and which of the challenged voters were not eligible to vote and whose ballots therefore will not be counted in determining the final results of the election. Based on the number of challenged ballots, coupled with the NLRB decision-making process and the possibility of an appeal to the full NLRB in Washington, D.C., it may take a considerable amount of time before the election results are finalized.

I am grateful for the engagement of many of our faculty in this process and for the strong commitment to the Northwestern community to which we all belong.  As we move toward the upcoming academic year, I want to reiterate that the University remains committed to cultivating its relationship with its non-tenure-track faculty, keeping the lines of communication open and improving working conditions for all faculty members, including non-tenure-track faculty.

I sincerely hope that you enjoy your summer, and I look forward to working with you throughout the next academic year on our shared goal of providing the most outstanding experience for Northwestern's students.

Thank you all.

Daniel Linzer