Major budget challenges, changes in the campus governance systems and declining student enrollments nationwide mean there has never been a more important time for all of us as union members to be vocal and to be united.
In an effort to build a stronger community, the UEA-Duluth Executive Committee has decided to experiment with the launch of a new, closed Facebook group that is available to all UEA-D members as well as fair share fee payers.
Certainly, Facebook is not without its deserved criticisms, and we may find that there are other social media tools more suitable to our work. That’s why we’re calling it an experiment.
Of course, some of the most important work that your union does for you – such as negotiating contracts and helping individual members deal with personal issues – are not the purview of a social media website.
Nevertheless, social media tools are being used by unions worldwide, and we are hopeful it will allow a number of things to happen:
- The UEA-D Executive Committee can keep members apprised of both important events and activities happening at UMD, offering the union perspective on issues.
- Any member can share news about trends and issues in the news both locally and nationally that may have an impact for higher education.
- Union members can use Facebook to have discussions with their fellow union members about issues important to our community.
Interested in joining us? Here is how it works.
First, of course, the Facebook group is only available to union members who belong to Facebook. For those who are not, we will still offer other communication channels such as our new website, our regular newsletters and the union list serve.
Second, if you are a Facebook member, then go to the UEA-D Facebook group link by clicking here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/419009304846899/. This is what is called a closed group, so you will have to request to join it. Once you do, UEA-D will confirm your membership and then grant you access.
Third, join the discussion. Unlike other Facebook communication, what is discussed on the UEA-D group page is closed – meaning it won’t be visible to those outside of the group. So, this allows for a more private discussion. Of course, Facebook is far from a secure means of communicating and it’s wise to limit discussions on this site to things you’d be comfortable saying out loud a public gathering.
We’d also ask that we keep discussions civil and respectful.