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The Essex County College Adjunct Faculty Federation held a membership meeting on July 16, 2020 via zoom.  

Many thanks to Mark Brodsky, the Chapter’s Secretary/Treasurer, for facilitating the zoom invitation.

The meeting began with a welcome and the encouragement for everyone do all they can to stay safe and healthy.

Our annual Scholarship Luncheon was postponed because of the pandemic.  It will resume when it is safe to do so.  

The leadership acknowledged how well everyone rose to the huge challenge of pivoting from teaching in-person to teaching online.  Those challenges included, but were not limited to; learning to use zoom, learning to use Moodle, tracking down students, complying with the 504 accommodations of differently-abled students, complying with the numerous emails sent from ECC Administration, adapting to the changes to the academic calendar, and more. 

Through all of these frustrations, challenges, and stressors, adjunct faculty reached out and supported one another in a true sense of brotherhood and unity.   

Dr. Anthony Munroe announced that he was leaving ECC to become President of the Borough of Manhattan Community College.  As of this posting, Dr. Auguste Boakye has been appointed Acting Interim President of ECC.  A transition like this, by its nature, brings a degree of instability. 

One of Dr. Munroe’s major projects was to improve student retention.  His primary focus was on the MATH 086, MATH 092, and ENG 086 courses.  Embedded tutors were placed in the classes, tutoring hours were enhanced and some of the 100 level courses in those disciplines were combined with the 00 level courses depending on the students’ majors.  The resulting studies and statistics showed that progress was being made.  We asked the adjunct faculty how it affected them.  There didn’t appear to be any issues for adjunct faculty with those strategies.  

The discussion moved to the College’s finances.  On June 24, 2020, ECC Administration reported to us that state funding to the College would be reduced by 50%. They also reported that all of the monies from the CARES Act, upward of $7.8M, had not been allocated because there were no clear guidelines on how it could be spent.  The portion of the CARES Act that was specifically   designated for students was distributed to them.  That amount was $3.8M.    

The College has declared “financial exigency.” There is a plan being developed with strategies to address same. Administration suggested they may have to resort to “RIF” (Reduction In Force).

Our negotiations with ECC Administration have not been as productive as we hoped they would be, despite our efforts.  We will continue to press for the acknowledgement, respect, and compensation we deserve.  

Our meeting included an open discussion among members.  Questions were addressed and, again, members offered to lend each other a helping hand to meet the challenges of navigating Moodle and Zoom.

In all, it was a collaborative, informative and uplifting experience.  Colleagues who haven’t been able to attend our regular meetings were able to participate.  We will schedule more zoom meetings on the future.  

As you read this message, we sincerely hope that you and your families are well.  There are brighter days ahead.  

In Unity,

Lynne Peterson Cummins

John Smith 

Mark Brodsky


The Adjunct Faculty Federation held its spring membership meetings on February 24, at the Main Campus, and February 26 at the West Essex Campus.

We want to thank the members who attended, as we always appreciate your support.  

In fall 2020 we will try a different schedule for our meeting to see if we can accommodate more members’ schedules.

Some of the highlights of the meeting are as follows:

-        Use of the Early Alert System is encouraged to alert students of areas they need to focus on to successfully complete their coursework.

-        The Retention Task Force has been meeting and actively addressing issues related to retaining students.  There is a lot of focus on the Developmental Math and Developmental English classes.  Tutoring services have been ramped-up and there are improvements being noted in those areas.  In addition, there is a restructuring of some of the same Math and English classes.

-        It is important to submit “No-Show” and attendance reporting on time.  It has a direct effect on the College’s funding.

-         Timely mid-term grade and final grade reporting are important, as students need their grades in order to register for classes and/or graduate.   

-        We distributed New Jersey Senate Concurrent Resolution No. 185.  It is an Adjunct Faculty Bill of Rights.  This Resolution acknowledges adjunct faculty in the State of New Jersey.  It is a first step in helping adjunct faculty make legislative progress.  Unemployment Insurance is another issue we are working at improving for adjunct faculty.  

-        The AFTNJ Convention will be April 18, 2020, Saturday, at Rutgers University Cook Campus, 59 Biel Road, East Brunswick, NJ.  Go to for details.

-        The national AFT Convention will take place in Houston, Texas from July 27-30, 2020.  As of this meeting, there were no details available.  Go to for details or call (800) 238-1133.

-        Our Chapter scholarship applications are available for students and adjunct faculty who are interested and who qualify.  They are available on this website in the Resources tab.  

-        Members were reminded to use personal contact for John Smith, (973)856-1133, by phone or his email,, when they need to express concerns or complaints NOT the essex webmail email addresses.  

-        It is important for adjunct faculty to come to the adjunct faculty unit officers with their concerns BEFORE going to the College Administration.  More often than not, we can get answers and reach solutions before things get too serious.  We cannot “fix” everything but we can try, if adjunct faculty work with us.

-        Our 4th quarter financial documents have been completed and certified by our accountant, CPA Natalie Pitts. All of our taxes have been paid for 2019

-        We are transitioning our bank account from TD Bank to Investors Bank.  

-        According to the College Roster, there are a total of 308 adjunct faculty teaching spring 2020.  There was a total of 304 in the fall 2019 semester. 

-        There was an update on the state of our negotiations with ECC Administration.  The process has slowed, since ECC brought in the outside attorney.  

-        We looked at comparisons of pay and a few items contained in contracts of our sister County Colleges.  The comparisons illuminate their differences from ECC.  

-        Discussion of strategies to obtain a contract that is acceptable and reflects our worth. 

We look forward to seeing you at our next meeting.  Until then, do not hesitate to reach out to us with any questions or concerns you may have.

In Unity,

Lynne Peterson Cummins, (973)856-0767,

John L Smith, (973)856-1133,

Mark Brodsky, (201)341-8811,


Randi Weingarten at a Massachusetts high school

Summer is upon us, and parents, children and teachers are winding down from what has been an exhausting and fully operational school year—the first since the devastating pandemic. The long-lasting impact of COVID-19 has affected our students’ and families’ well-being and ignited the politics surrounding public schools. All signs point to the coming school year unfolding with the same sound and fury, and if extremist culture warriors have their way, being even more divisive and stressful.


What unions do


In AFT President Randi Weingarten’s latest New York Times  column, she describes what it is exactly that unions do. Though unions are the most popular they have been in decades, anti-union sentiment still thrives in red states and across the nation. “Several years ago, The Atlantic ran a story whose headline made even me, a labor leader, scratch my head: ‘Union Membership: Very Sexy,’” Weingarten writes in the column. “The gist was that higher wages, health benefits and job security—all associated with union membership—boost one’s chances of getting married. Belonging to a union doesn’t actually guarantee happily ever after, but it does help working people have a better life in the here and now.” Click through to read the full column.

Since the College closed for Covid 19, your Negotiating Team has been meeting with the College on a regular basis via Zoom as we continue to strive for a fair and equitable contract.
Our last session was conducted on May 14th, and our next session which was scheduled for May 28th was cancelled by the College. We will update this message as soon as another session is sceduled.
While we do our best to bring you a tentative agreement as soon as possible, please know that we appreciate your patience and support.



OCTOBER 15 & 17, 2018

Our Fall 2018 membership meetings were held on October 15, 2018 at the Main Campus of Essex County College and October 17, 2018 at the West Essex Campus, where the agenda was repeated.

Some of the highlights discussed at the meetings were as follows:

·      Essex County College is requiring completion of the Safe Colleges Online Training, which includes Title IX and FERPA.  Our members were encouraged to complete the training and print out the Completion Certificates and send the Certificates to Human Resources to be filed.

·      The Chairman of the College’s Professional Development Advisory Committee asked that our members submit suggestions of Professional Development activities they would be interested in attending.   

·      We discussed the issue of 504 accommodations that students present to classroom teachers.  Suggestions were made to make the process more confidential, secure and timely.  Those suggestions were passed along to the Director of Student Development and Career Counseling.

·      Unemployment Insurance (UI) for Adjunct Faculty is an ongoing concern.  The matter is still an important project with AFT.  Members were asked to submit to us, in writing, any stories they have of trying to get UI.  

·      The benefits of membership were discussed in addition to the latest attempts at “union busting” taking place in the country. Members were warned of what to be aware of and to let us know if they are approached by some of those organizations.

·      In order to enhance our organizing efforts, we are offering $10 to each member who signs up a new, eligible, member.

·      The new contract was distributed.  We asked that everyone be familiar with it.  To that end, members made suggestions of proposals for the next round of contract negotiations.  

·      The AFT’s benefit of Accidental Death and Dismemberment was explained and the Beneficiary Forms were distributed and completed. This benefit is of no additional cost to the members.

·      Emphasis was made for adjunct faculty to come to the officers with any concerns or problems they are facing before going to ECC Administration.  We have been able to successfully intervene on our member’s behalf.  

·      The two retroactive payments that adjunct faculty received on June 8 and 22 was explained.  The College paid a total amount of $936,442  

·      Our dues structure to AFT national, AFTNJ and Local 2222 was outlined. 

·      The College is looking forward to the 50thanniversary of its first graduation.  Activities are planned throughout the year to commemorate this event. There will be a Gala on May 2, 2019.

·      Our members were made aware that the scholarship applications for Adjunct Faculty and students are currently on our website. We also announced that we would like to honor those adjunct faculty who have taught at ECC for 30 or more years. Last year we honored Terry Benjamin, Ngari Ngunjiri, and Joseph Nwokwo at our scholarship luncheon.  This year a few more names are coming forward.

·      The meeting ended with a prominent reminder to be sure to VOTE on November 6, 2018


Please click here to download the current ECCAFF Contract.