Posted on Hunter-L – Tally Ho: DC 37, PSC Hunter, Academic Bullying

The following was posted on the Hunter College listserv known as Hunter-L, an once thriving general communication apparatus for student, instructors and staff but has fallen on hard times, frequently reading like a tepid supermarket flyer, no less:


Regarding DC-37 and PSC Hunter, it appears that DC-37@Hunter – DC-37 is the city’s largest public employee union – has been doing a better job helping its members who have been bullied. [Definition of Bullying]

The tally is based on empirical observations and personal experiences.

This is not a rave review of DC-37 on this campus. I don’t know its inner workings as well as I know the inner workings of the PSC Hunter Chapter, which has been compromised for years. That reality about the ethical compromise might not stick in Colleagues’ craws but it sticks in mine, so much so that a while back I was in a back-and-forth with lieutenants of PSC-CUNY President Barbara Bowen.

The rest is in the attachment.

The attachment info:

DC-37, for example, helped a college assistant who was forced to grade papers, fetch coffee, endure sundry indecencies. DC-37 also helped a  systems administrator forced to feed parking meters. Coercing staff to feed parking meters appears to be fetishistic for at least one department on this campus.

The systems administrator, who had created the best operation for undergraduate journalism and media students at City University of New York, was also harassed for following CUNY Admin orders to remove allegedly scurrilous Internet sites off a department server. [After he left for a much better job, his gem for undergraduates ceased to exist.] Student staff were recruited to harass him. Using students in bullying efforts is a tradition in at least one department on this campus.

Adjunct instructors as well as one tenured professor have been pressured to give undeserving passing grades to undeserving students. Where has PSC Hunter been on this matter which has been going on for years? Some PSC Hunter reps have been in the thick of the morass.

Here’s one for the books: A PSC CUNY grievance officer telling a tenured assistant professor that he had to tolerate Colleagues invading his classrooms and office as well as insulting his students, especially the kinky insulting of female students.

The advice to the tenured J-prof who had requested a nonviolent means for dealing with the obvious provocative intrusions? “Don’t do anything to upset your colleagues,” that grievance officer said. Tell the students being insulted, the grievance officer continued, to file complaints; the instructor absolutely should not file a complaint against his Colleagues. [And that’s one of the reasons why I eventually starting requiring students in certain classes to do a student rights project and will continue to do so.]


More regarding the whereabouts of PSC Hunter when nastiness is inflicted on its members: Incidents of phony workplace violence complaints of staff and a tenured assistant professor, with a PSC Hunter officio directly involved. What about the latest allegations of a Hunter Administration Goon Squad mission to impugn the integrity of a tenured professor by trying to encourage former students and students enrolled in his classes to provide dirt on him? One would think that contacting, or trying to contact, students enrolled in an instructor’s class to dig up dirt on the instructor is a hideous breech of Academic Freedom.

What’s PSC Hunter’s position on this kind of thuggery? I wonder how many HAGS have been dispatched on surreptitious missions? Are in the works? Have succeeded with their missions?

PSC-CUNY states that it supports the NYS Healthy Workplace Bill. A copy of a petition that I started is on its website but you wouldn’t know on this campus that there’s an effort to confront bullying – not with PSC Hunter reps having been engaged in bullying and character assassination well before I learned about the New York State Healthy Workplace Bill.

I shared a guest appearance with a PSC CUNY officio on one of several radio shows I’ve done recently about the bill. The rep waxed lugubriously about extensive bullying at CUNY, and I, so as not to insult or undermine the PSC officio on the live show, remained silent about the shenanigans of PSC Hunter and the grievance officer. Not any more. In upcoming radio shows and forums and anti-bullying efforts, it’s the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

There are robust discussions in #healthyworkplaceforums about union negligence as well as complicity regarding bullying. In some forums, activists and targets strategize and agonize about the best methods for outing union heretics involved in bullying of their members. One anecdote in one forum tells of professors who are business partners engaged in the academic version of tag-team wrestling. That is, one business partner bullies while the other business partner lurks in the background, ready to jump into the ring at a moments notice to keep the pummeling going.

Regarding another #healthyworkplace social media forum, this anecdote has been getting attention: A business partner of an union rep inspired an effort that had the elements of a pogrom, It was to target adjuncts in a department because of the partner’s weird displeasure with one adjunct – “He’s been teaching here more than 11 years” – and viola, the pogrom started to take shape. Eleven years of teaching can make an adjunct a target? This anecdote being discussed in activists anti-bullying forums is too byzantine to describe in detail in this H-L post.


Gregg Morris

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