In a highly suspenseful vote, a divided Senate rejected Alapaki Nahale-a to a second term on the UH Board of Regents by a razor thin margin of 13 – 12.  A defeat can be viewed either as a loss or an opportunity.  We understand that there were at least 15 no votes before UHPAʻs Faculty Members started reaching out to their respective Senators sharing their concerns over the conduct and behavior by certain Senators in the Higher Education Committee.  The effort you started and followed through on, resulted in a vote that couldʻve gone either way.  Given a little more time, who knows what the outcome would have been.  

It is in this light today’s vote was not necessarily a defeat.  Instead, UHPA members demonstrated that faculty will no longer condone and be silent as certain Senators continue to wreak their damage on the academy and its members.  This was not a fair fight.  Intentionally handcuffed by a weekend and short announcement, UHPA Faculty put up a valiant fight and effort in an attempt to change the narrative.  UHPA Faculty believe, given a level playing field, the outcome wouldʻve been different.

With just roughly 2,600 active UHPA members, we almost changed the course of history.  Thatʻs impact.  Thatʻs a statement.  Thatʻs activism.  

Now is a time that UHPA Faculty regroup and evolve as we continue this fight.  Beginning April 1st, UHPA will add 1.7 million new players and supporters when our affiliation with the AFT becomes official.  Next week, AFT officials from their organizing and legislative strategy department will be coming into town and meeting with UHPA and its membership on various campuses to start building a campaign and strategy to expand UHPAʻs voice and presence. 

The Faculty will no longer be spectators in the stands.  It’s time we enter as players to protect one of the Stateʻs most precious commodities, our beloved university and the students and communities they rigorously and proudly serve with honor, dignity, respect – and most importantly with ALOHA.