Last month, the Cornell administration announced a review of our campus’s mental health system. Throughout the last year, Cornell Graduate Students United has campaigned for just such a review. Over 900 graduate students signed our petition asking for an external review of the system, in addition to other demands, and we are glad the administration has finally acknowledged the mental health crisis on campus. Whether or not the proposed mental health review succeeds, however, depends on its structure. As it stands, there is almost no public information on the administration’s proposed mental health review.
The arbitrator found that the email sent on March 26, 2017, by Senior Vice Provost and Dean of the Graduate School Barbara Knuth contained a statement that violated the NLRA, according to the arbitrator’s award document.
The socio-political climate recently has been emotionally taxing, taking a toll on our graduate student body. Locally, this has been exacerbated by the vitriolic nature of discussions on the union, with accusations flying on both sides. Some have charged CGSU with harassing tactics. Others are painting neutrality or alternate views about the union as self-interest and apathy towards the welfare of their peers across fields. We are writing as the two graduate student representatives on the General Committee, the administrative, legislative and judicial board of the Graduate School.
“I am confident CGSU and Cornell can work together to achieve mutual gains and that the agreement can serve as a guiding light for higher education institutions across the Ivy league and around the country,” said AFT president Randi Weingarten ’80.