Earlier in the month, some of us in SAS-New Brunswick received an email from the Office of Finance and Budget dictating that if we wanted to purchase books or other items from a vendor other than Amazon, we would “need to get exception approval before submitting the reimbursement” and “must include the business reason for the requested exception in the email.”
Yet another edict from the administration that makes it harder for us to do our jobs. But our Organizing and Action Team swung into action, drafting an email template for faculty to demand exception approval. Lo and behold, this produced a “clarification” of SAS policy that reverses the Amazon-Comes-First rule.
Unfortunately, the SAS-NB administration hasn’t seen fit to distribute this clarification widely, so we’ll help them out by pasting what they wrote here:
This should help those of us in SAS-NB, but we’ve heard from people in other schools and campuses that you’re feeling the same pressure to use Rutgers’ institutional account with the anti-union Amazon behemoth. You can push back, though—and use the SAS-NB “clarification” to bolster your case. Email us at email@example.com if you’re experiencing this problem with ordering books.
This is a win for us and our students. We got back some measure of faculty autonomy, and we have an alternative to a union-busting corporation with a foul record of worker mistreatment, ecological damage, and unbridled greed. With your freedom to “order books/items from vendors other than Amazon,” consider working with these unionized bookstores—there are three in New York City alone.
Andy and the Organizing and Action Team
Andrew Urban, Vice President, New Brunswick chapter, Rutgers AAUP-AFT