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Campus Equity Week Events Raise Awareness

Poor Faculty Working Conditions Headline Issues Affecting Quality of Higher Education

WASHINGTON, DC -- (Marketwired) -- 10/22/13 -- A broad coalition of organizations working on student and faculty issues on U.S. college campuses announced that Campus Equity Week, Oct. 28-Nov. 2, will feature more than 125 events to raise awareness about the nation's increasingly stratified higher education system.

Organizers said more than 100 campuses in at least 20 states will participate in the week of education and activism, with more added daily. National actions will also take place on social media.

Campus Equity Week focuses on issues raised by the increased reliance on adjunct or contingent (temporary) faculty, the majority of whom are paid poverty-level wages and receive no benefits. They make up more than 70 percent of faculty at colleges and universities nationwide -- which has pushed inequities to a crisis level at many institutions.

A central principle of the week is that high-quality education depends on professional and just working conditions for all faculty.

Members of this adjunct instructional workforce face many labor and equity issues, including reduction of salary and the denial of healthcare benefits in response to the Affordable Care Act; student loan debt; issues for students, staff and faculty of color; misguided curriculum "reform"; institutions' blind faith in massive open online courses (MOOCs) and other online education; and disinvestment in public higher education.

So far, events are planned for campuses in Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and Wisconsin, with additional events added daily.

Events range from an Ohio statewide summit to showings of the play FOR PROFIT, which highlights student debt. Rallies, petition drives and workshops are also planned. An updated events list is available on the Campus Equity Week website.

New Faculty Majority is the central coordinator of Campus Equity Week, with support from organizations across the country. Also known as Fair Employment Week in Canada where it is held Oct. 21-25, the week began in 2001 under the auspices of the Coalition of Contingent Academic Labor to highlight the appalling working conditions of the majority of the faculty and the impact of those conditions on the quality of education.

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