September 23, 2020
Dear BFS families,
Over the past week, the faculty and staff at BFS held a strike authorization vote in connection with the administration’s petition to decertify the employees’ union. The union has shared the results of that vote: 96% voted to authorize a strike. (Of the 125 people who voted, 120 voted yes and 5 voted no.)
This does not mean there will be a strike. This vote means that the BFS employees have authorized their negotiating committee, made up of teachers and staff, to call one if they deem it necessary.
No one wants a strike. The entire community has much to lose, including the employees themselves, who would lose pay for its duration and who rely on the school for their livelihoods. The faculty and staff took this vote seriously and would not make the decision to cease work lightly. If a strike occurs, it is only because they feel they need the union to preserve their basic rights and all other efforts to resolve this conflict have failed.
This authorization concerns only the administration’s petition to the NLRB. If the administration withdraws the petition, there will be no strike.
There is still a chance that this can end without the disruption that a strike would entail.
As many of you know, former clerks of the BFS Board of Trustees, all Quakers, have proposed a way to resolve this conflict. Their proposal calls for the administration to withdraw the petition and for both the administration and the union to turn away from past conflicts and incorporate Quaker processes into the labor-management relationship.
Members of the Board of Trustees have met with the clerks about this proposal and the BFS union has already expressed their support. The clerks’ proposal is a reasonable path forward and would allow all involved to return their focus to the urgent task of educating our children during this most challenging of school years.
We ask that you email the Board of Trustees and the Administration to encourage them to rescind the petition, avoid a strike, and begin to heal our community. You can contact the Board at email@example.com and the Head of School at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
If you have any questions or are looking for information, please reach out via email to firstname.lastname@example.org; information is also available at this site, maintained by parents, or this site, maintained by the BFS Union, which contains critical information about the authorization vote. We look forward to hearing from you and to working with all of you to help resolve this conflict.