Their ensuing conversations resulted in the creation of the Coalition of Contingent Academic Labor (COCAL), a grassroots coalition of non tenure-track faculty activists. Fueled by internet listservs and email communications, various faculty leaders across North America agreed that the model of loosely coordinated national campaign was worth attempting throughout higher education.
At its 2001 conference, COCAL decided to coordinate CEW 2001 across North America. The first campaign was financed by twenty-four faculty organizations (unions and professional associations). CEW has been held in the Fall of 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2013, and 2015.
In both 2013 and 2015, COCAL selected New Faculty Majority (NFM) to coordinate the national CEW campaigns. NFM facilitated Congressional Briefings as a part of CEW and supported the making of a short video entitled Professors in Poverty produced by the non-profit company Brave New Films.
The original "Campus Equity Week" activities of some community colleges in California in 1999 led to communications among several centers of faculty organizing which were confronting the increasing abuse of contingent assignments in higher education.
Faculty working conditions are student learning conditions!
Equitable and inclusive education
requires equitable and inclusive support of ALL faculty.
California College of the Arts, SEIU 1021
Campus Equity Week is a nationally coordinated effort that weaves together local actions. This organizing model allows for increased visibility of each action and of our movement altogether. This website serves as a centralized space for information sharing. A national calendar of local events supports increased press and public interest while building a broader activist community. Our goal is to draw new faculty activists into the movement, help provide tools for successful campus and union based CEW events across the country, and ensure local administrators are aware that their decisions about faculty working conditions are the object of public scrutiny.
Since its inception, the CEW campaign has served an important role in the movement for academic equity. Over nearly two decades of tenacious organizing, we have successfully shifted the focus of teaching conditions in higher education from narrow labor issues to broader questions of institutional integrity and educational quality. The labor movement, student activists, social justice organizations, state and local politicians, and the news media have all taken up the issue of campus equity through our rallying cry:
We are deeply grateful to the many talented activists whose work we share on these pages.
For 2017 CEW, NFM has facilitated
the development of an arts based,
steered by artist faculty activists
from diverse institutions:
These activists have taught for
a long time off the tenure-track
while participating in the national
movement for campus equity.
The national Campus Equity Week campaign (CEW) seeks to promote awareness of the harmful consequences of the precarious situation of faculty in higher education, to organize for action, and to build solidarity among stakeholders. CEW has expanded activism within the higher education labor movement and led to significant gains in equity (increases in compensation and due process protections), largely among faculty represented by unions. Only a small minority of non tenure-track faculty in the U.S. are members of collective bargaining units.
This year the national day of action is October 31st. CEW has traditionally spanned the last calendar week in October. We recognize the need for flexibility with dates due to local scheduling conditions, and so we suggest that the week of activities for 2017 be designated as any week that includes October 31st, with at least one action taking place on that day no matter what else is planned for your campus.
"I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand."