Strike averted at Howard University as faculty, administration reach tentative deal

Nontenure track faculty members at Howard University in D.C. will not go on strike Wednesday after reaching a tentative agreement with the university.

“We are hereby calling off the strike,” said a tweet from the teaching faculty union at Howard University.

SEUI Local 500 represents hundreds of full-time teaching faculty and adjunct professors, nontenure track full-time teaching faculty and adjunct professors at Howard University.

“We are pleased to announce that we have reached a tentative three-year agreement with SEIU Local 500, the union representing Howard’s full-time lecturer and adjunct faculty,” a statement from Howard University said.

“We have stood firm in our commitment to respect the bargaining process that our union-faculty are entitled to, and it is in the spirit of that commitment that our leaders remained in hourslong negotiations until an agreement was reached. Our contingent faculty are a respected part of our institution. We share the collective goal of educating our students and today, because of this agreement and efforts to bargain in good faith on both sides, we will achieve that goal uninterrupted,” the statement went on to say.

Howard spokesman Frank Tramble told WTOP both sides came to an agreement on “a lot of the sticking points that we’ve been discussing.”

“We’ve had opportunities to really ensure that this deal is one that works for both the university and for the faculty,” Tramble said, adding that they wanted to make sure that they didn’t have a disruption in campus operations.

“At the end of the day, that’s what we’re all here for. We’re here to support our students, we’re here to provide a high-class education for them, and to make sure they are prepared for the world and whatever goals that they set.”

Faculty members threatened to walk out for three days over the issue of low pay.

The union reached a deal with the administration at 3:26 a.m. Wednesday, the union said.

Union members will have to vote to ratify the tentative agreement, and the union said a vote “will be scheduled in the coming weeks.”

WTOP’s Matt Small contributed to this report.

Colleen Kelleher

Colleen Kelleher is an award-winning journalist who has been with WTOP since 1996. Kelleher joined WTOP as the afternoon radio writer and night and weekend editor and made the move to WTOP.com in 2001. Now she works early mornings as the site's Senior Digital Editor.

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