Maryland Community Colleges Form AAUP-AFT Unions

By Kelly Hand

Faculty members at two community colleges in Maryland, Howard Community College and Frederick Community College, filed for union recognition in August, petitioning the state Public Employee Relations Board to join the AAUP, the American Federation of Teachers (AFT), and AFT-Maryland. They are the first community colleges in Maryland to organize—joining full-time unionized faculty at Montgomery College affiliated with the AAUP and the AFT—since the state legislature reformed the collective bargaining process. Under state law, the new units became officially certified after thirty days.

Faculty members at both community colleges share concerns about the disrespect they have encountered from administrators and are organizing to win dignity and better compensation and working conditions. AAUP president Irene Mulvey said, “With this important step, the faculty at these two outstanding community colleges will have a stronger collective voice to promote the core academic mission, to demand the respect they deserve, and to advocate for policies to ensure their institutions are the best they can be.”