Staff learned about layoffs from press

The notice to the press, in the form of a press release regarding layoffs of about ten percent of SJSU’s staff, apparently went to the media at around 8 a.m. this morning. My first “notice” there was going to be a layoff was a call from a reporter asking me for a comment. At about 1 p.m. an employee said to me, “a lot of us are disturbed because we heard about the SJSU layoffs first in an article in the business journal. Why didn’t SJSU tell us before they told the press?”

Almost 8 hours later (I received this e-mail time stamped 4:02 p.m. today) the following went to the campus community:

Dear Faculty and Staff,

Shortly before Spring Break I sent out a campus-wide message about the necessity of layoffs at San José State University to help bring our expenditures within our severely constrained budget.

Up to this point, we implemented many alternatives short of layoffs – none of which were “easy” decisions. The furloughs we have all experienced this year allowed us the time to eliminate vacant positions. We have also cut operational costs wherever possible, saving many jobs.

Nonetheless, today we have announced layoffs at SJSU. Approximately 75 SJSU employees received layoff notifications today.

Campus leadership has been working hard to keep the number of employees who receive layoff notices to as small a number as possible. But the fact that we are laying off fewer individuals is no consolation to those whose jobs have disappeared. The fact is, even one layoff is too many. This is a truly sad time for San Jose State University, for the CSU, and for me personally.

Each and every one of us will feel the impacts of these layoffs, in both practical and emotional ways. Our Human Resources department will go above and beyond in helping affected employees through this very difficult time.

We are all in this together, and we are all experiencing stress and difficulty. Now more than ever, let’s commit to treating each other with generosity of spirit, patience, and kindness. Even in the most challenging of times we must remember our mission, which has not changed. Students continue to count on San José State University’s staff and faculty to provide them with the education and opportunity they deserve. Whatever difficulties we face, our students must remain our highest priority.

Jon Whitmore
President

Thanks, that’s how to make us feel special. Meanwhile…

Dennis Fox, the staff employee union’s chief steward has sent the following to the campus community:

Most of you will have heard that the university announced layoffs in bargaining units 2, 7, and 9 today. The link below lists the affected classifications. Those of you who are affected by this announcement should already have received your layoff notice from management. Your CSUEU chapter leadership will be announcing meeting dates in the next few days to assist everyone in getting through this difficult time. CSUEU will be working with the university in an effort to reduce the number of employees who are finally laid off. Anyone who has received a notice of layoff or a notice of reassignment should contact a union steward. Please understand that some of your fellow employees are going through a difficult time. Your understanding is appreciated.

Layoff Notice [PDF] | Contact List

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