UI administration displays inabilities

UI administration displays inabilities

The University of Illinois administration refuses to offer its graduate employees, among other things, a living wage. What's worse, they refuse to guarantee that future graduate employees will have full tuition waivers, thus abandoning their commitment to providing public education to all those qualified, not merely all those who can afford it.

In its defense, the administration insists it is not in a financial position to meet the needs of its graduate employees. This is just to admit that they have failed in their responsibilities. And yet no administrator is offering to resign (or even apologize) over this failure.

Rather, by refusing to pay a living wage to its workers, administrators insist that graduate employees subsidize their desire to be university administrators. And, to add insult to injury, the administration has lavished itself with raises and bonuses, such as the two consecutive $100,000 performance bonuses President Tim Killeen has been paid.

Instead of taking responsibility for their own failure to compensate their employees fairly, the administration asks us to subsidize their fantasy that they are "good" at being university administrators.

The Graduate Employees Organization's positions in the contract negotiation represent benchmark requirements that any serious public university should meet. If, as I suspect, the university is in a financial position to meet them, it is obligated to do so.

If, as the university insists, the university is not in a financial position to do so, perhaps the administrators would do us the favor of declining "performance bonuses" and relinquishing their posts to more competent successors.