|Photo Purple Walrus Press.|
By Editor & Publisher Jeff Brown.
Roughly 100 Eastern Michigan University staff participated in a Rally To Save Our Staff demonstration and march that was held on the University's campus early Thursday afternoon. Participants braved cold temperatures to voice their anger over what demonstrators believe are unfair staff cutbacks due to university budget constraints. The rally was sponsored by EMU AAUP. Rally participants chanted "Shame", "Bullshit", and "Chop from the top."
According to the Rally to Save Our Staff facebook page, "Top administrators at EMU are eliminating 60 clerical and technical and professional jobs." Participants in Wednesday's rally want to stop the cuts and, "Demand a new way forward for EMU." This according to the Rally to Save Our Staff organizer on their page..
EMU president James Smith recently stated that Eastern Michigan University is facing a $4.5 to $5.5 million budget deficit for the 2018 fiscal year. Smith attributed the need for staff cutbacks to a projected 2.5 percent student credit hour drop for the 2018 fiscal year, in essence creating less tuition and fees revenue.
According to a Jan 25, 2018 conversation with WEMU, President Smith stated, "If we did nothing from today going forward, we would be between four and a half to five and a half million dollars off where we need to be to make our budget work. In order not to be in that situation, which means you are literally drawing from the university savings account, which is not robust, we said we have to look at position eliminations, and we have to look at our spending around our supplies budget, our materials budget, and what we call SS&M here on campus." This according to a conversation between James Smith and WEMU.