Like you, we watched the storming of the Capitol Building on January 6th with a mixture of fear and disbelief, not because the events seemed unreal—they seemed all-too-real, in fact—but because none of us imagined we would ever bear witness in this country to the kind of political violence we tend to think of as happening “somewhere else.” In the days that have passed since what can only be described as an insurrection—not least because of related events that occurred in Washington State and the State of Georgia—we have been reflecting on how we as a union should respond.
As an Executive Committee representing members from across the political spectrum, we work hard to maintain a non-partisan, pro-labor stance, focusing our efforts on protecting our contract and our members’ professional rights so that we can continue to deliver for our students the kind of stellar education that Nassau Community College is known for. Our country was founded on the tenets of free speech and the right to protest peacefully. The heightened rhetoric of January 6th, and the willingness of those who ultimately stormed the capitol to cause harm to those who do not agree with them, does not align with the values and principles of our great nation, our great union, or our respected colleagues.
As a union of higher education professionals, we are committed to the democratizing role public education plays in our society. Through our shared commitment to truth, mutual respect, equity, and inclusion, institutions like ours help provide access for more and more different kinds of people into active participation in civic life, the precise antithesis of what was on display in Washington, DC on January 6th.
We are proud to stand alongside you in support of those democratizing values during these difficult times. Let’s take this opportunity to start anew, to work together with the common goal of building a stronger union, together.
We stand stronger when we stand together.
The NCCFT Executive Committee
Donna Hope, President
Richard Newman, Vice President Classroom Faculty
Darren Petronella, Vice President Non-Classroom/Professional Faculty
Caroline Falconetti, Treasurer
Lynn Bergin, Secretary