CFA Statement on Steven Salaita and U of Illinois

The Campus Faculty Association of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign calls upon Chancellor Phyllis Wise to reverse her decision to revoke the offer of appointment made to Professor Steven Salaita last October by Dean Brian Ross. Chancellor Wise is reported (in The Chronicle of Higher Education of August 7, 2014) to have told Professor Salaita in her letter of revocation that she did not believe the Board of Trustees would approve the appointment when it came before them next month. In capitulating to the highly politicized decision-making process of the Board of Trustees, Chancellor Wise has failed to protect the integrity of the core values of our university. Faculty shared governance and respect for established procedures guaranteeing fairness in faculty hiring, promotion, and dismissal are seriously threatened by this administrative action. CFA believes that our best defense against this threat is a strong faculty union. The new faculty union at the University of Oregon has one of the strongest academic freedom frameworks in the country.

As an immediate action in response to the current administrative assault on shared governance and fairness in hiring practices, we ask all concerned faculty members to write to Chancellor Wise, President Easter, and Chairman Kennedy and call upon them to reverse this unfortunate decision. And in the coming year we hope that concerned faculty will join with CFA in its continuing effort to defend shared governance and respect for the core values of this university.

– Executive Committee of the Campus Faculty Association