Government Relations Committee
Do you know who your state representative or senator is in the Maryland Legislature? Perhaps it is a good time to find out what happened in the latest election in November. Lest we forget! If you recall last year, the Maryland legislature proposed a draconian measure to address budget shortfalls for the state. One of the proposals put forward was to eliminate half of the staff positions in the USM system and eliminate tuition remission for the children of faculty. One reason this legislation did not pass can be attributed to the letters, emails and phone calls delegates received from faculty members.
This recent matter, along with continuing furloughs and other issues that have arisen over the past few years of the economic crisis, has forced the executive committee of the Towson University Faculty Association/AAUP to consider where to concentrate our efforts. While we are constantly attuned to issues on the Towson University campus, we are also aware that many of the conditions created at our university emanate from the state political apparatus. Therefore, we are making a concerted effort this spring to bring issues of concern to faculty at Towson directly to state delegates through lobbying and face-to-face interaction. This spring a group of faculty will go to Annapolis in conjunction with the President’s office to try and provide a different perspective on the role of faculty for our elected officials. We know there is more to our job than what is perceived. You work hard and we want that effort recognized. While we are making this attempt, we are asking faculty to stay attuned to bills being introduced in the Maryland legislature this upcoming session that address the USM. A good source for this information is the Towson Advocacy Program newsletters that find their way into your inbox on occasion. Just as with other matters where we need the support of faculty across campus to address issues here, we will need your support when and if the occasion arises to address our elected officials should conditions necessitate action this spring.
Matthew Durington (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Vice-President, TU-AAUP Faculty Association
Associate Professor, Department of Sociology, Anthropology and Criminal Justice