San Juan – The university community celebrated the departure of Walter Alomar and Zoraida Buxó from the Governing Board of the University of Puerto Rico (UPR), but demanded the departure of President Jorge Haddock and other members who do not defend the institution.
Representatives of the nine university organizations of workers, teachers and retirees expressed that Alomar and Buxó left a terrible and irresponsible record of constant confrontation with the university community, coupled with the fact that they agreed to cuts from the Fiscal Control Board.
“As a university community, today we demand that the members of the Governing Board behave at the level demanded by the times in defense of the first educational center in the country. Today they receive a UPR of 11 precincts. His ministerial duty is to defend it and to ensure that the funds and the budget allocation formula are restored. They must reject the changes to the retirement plan and they have to respect the university culture with their institutions, ”the spokesmen demanded at a press conference.
They said that Alomar and Buxó are not the only ones who must leave their posts.
They warned that Jorge Haddock has also been a lousy president, despite the fact that he has a salary that is double that of his predecessors, through a questionable professional services contract.
“Haddock does not represent the best interests of the university community. We cannot trust a president who did not face the cuts because he considered them ‘manageable’. Haddock has no place at the University, he has to go and with him, everyone who has endorsed the destruction of our town’s university, ”they claimed.
They recalled that the so-called justification for dispensing him an exorbitant salary – which does not pale in comparison to that of the luxury employees of the Chamber and the Senate – “was for him to obtain external funds and at this point no one has raised any fleece.”
They demanded that the new Governing Board avoid a climate of confrontation with the workers, respecting their work and the agreements reached through collective bargaining.
“Workers are not mere accessories or support personnel as Haddock believes. We are an integral and indispensable part in the operation of the University ”, they stressed.
Claim to the candidates for governor
The representatives of the organizations also asked the candidates and the candidate for governor a firm commitment that does not remain in empty campaign promises.
“The six applicants must know that our university community and our extended family are passing judgment on their proposals and that evaluation will be reflected when they go to the polls. We claim a real commitment. We deserve a governor who stands up against the cuts by the Board and demands the restitution of the formula in the budget, declaring the UPR an essential service, the rest is demagoguery, “warned the spokesmen.
Signatory organizations of this declaration:
- UPR Retirees Association
- Retirement System Board of the UPR
- Brotherhood of Exempt Non-Teaching Employees (Heend)
- Retiree Chapter of the Heend
- Puerto Rican Association of University Professors (Appu)
- Association of Professors of the University Campus of Mayagüez (Aprum)
- Association of Supervisors and Managers of the UPR
- Labor Federation of Employees of the Mayagüez Campus (Flerum)
- Union of Workers of the UPR