Desert Community College District
Board of Trustees Meeting
Mister Chair, Madam Superintendent/President, Members of the Board and College Community,
CODAA and the adjunct faculty and staff stand in solidarity with the people of Ukraine.
One of our adjuncts, the COD women’s tennis coach, is Ukrainian. Her name is Yuliya Eourim. She tells us that her mom and her brother are trapped in the war zone and unable to leave. Her sister-in-law and two children managed to escape, and are currently living as refugees in Lithuania. Our hearts and prayers are with Yuliya and her family. CODAA urges the Board of Trustees to take a careful look at College of the Desert investment portfolios, and immediately divest the college of any holdings found to support Russia and its illegal, unprovoked war against the people of Ukraine.
Everyone is feeling the stress of inflation, especially adjuncts, many of whom live from paycheck to paycheck. War-related surges in gas prices and food are driving inflation to the highest levels anyone has seen in 40 years. CODAA is restricted by our current CBA from reopening Article VII on Compensation. But, in view of this unforeseen increase in prices, we suggest that the District consider a one-time, non-precedent setting payment to all COD employees who need help in meeting suddenly spiraling expenses. CODAA proposes that the District consult with CODFA, CSEA, and CODAA, and authorize a one-time emergency “gas and groceries” stipend to bring relief to the members of our COD community who are struggling to make ends meet.
Work is continuing on creating CODAA’s grant-funded Adjunct Equity Committee. Equity means treating everyone with equal respect and fairness, and that includes equitable compensation. In short, if you’re going to have real equity, you must have parity.
Finally, March is Women’s History Month, a national celebration of women’s contributions to history, culture, and society. The idea for this celebration actually started in Sonoma, California, in 1978, when hundreds of students participated in an essay contest about women’s contributions to the world. The idea caught on in school districts and organizations across the country, and three years later Congress passed a resolution establishing a national celebration. CODAA honors and supports the imagination, wisdom, and leadership of all the women in our college community.
Dr. Catherine Levitt, President of CODAA