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PSC Leader and a Dozen Dissidents Debate Pact: Reality vs. Aspiration

Posted 7/18/16

Four weeks earlier, Professional Staff Congress President Barbara Bowen had taken a figurative victory lap after prodding the City University of New York to get off a state bargaining pattern it had held to for the previous five years and give her “a strong, imaginative contract in a period of enforced austerity for public workers because our members mobilized.”

She was referring to the series of demonstrations held by the union, including one three months earlier at which she was among 52 people arrested for protesting what she called an “insulting” offer by CUNY. By May, 92 percent of her rank and file had voted to authorize a strike, which she deferred until the fall term, hoping the threat would give her the leverage to reach the deal she announced with jubilance on June 16.

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