NYU Fair Labor Code of Conduct
President John Sexton and the New York University Administration
Coalition for Fair Labor at NYU
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We, the undersigned faculty, students and other members of the New York University community, write to express our concerns with the current absence of any fair labor standards governing the construction, development and operation of the New York University administration's proposed branch campus at Abu Dhabi.
NYU Abu Dhabi a possibly tenureless university being constructed by a government noted for its abuse of migrant worker labor risks further undermining the importance of labor rights and academic freedom on its New York and Abu Dhabi campuses and exacerbating migrant labor exploitation in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). UAE migrant workers are routinely subjected to serious rights abuse, including non-payment of wages, withholding of passports, hazardous working conditions, lack of protection for collective bargaining rights and deportation for striking. In the absence of active precautions, the construction, development and operation of the NYU branch campus at Abu Dhabi will perpetuate this systemic abuse of migrant workers through UAE government agencies lackluster enforcement of inadequate law.
We urge NYU to demonstrate a commitment to fair labor standards and formally adopt and insist that its UAE partners abide by the Fair Labor Code of Conduct promulgated by the Coalition for Fair Labor at NYU and backed by the NYU Chapter of the American Association of University Professors (AAUP), Human Rights Watch (HRW) and the Workers Rights Consortium (WRC) to govern the construction, development and operation of its Abu Dhabi branch campus in the UAE. By adopting the Fair Labor Code of Conduct NYU will as befitting a university committed to democratic principles provide a model for labor practice in a region experiencing unprecedented attention by US/Western universities interested in establishing branch campuses at sites in and around Abu Dhabi. It is time for NYU to fulfill its institutional promise as a university committed to democratic practice and responsible learning to be a private university in the public service and a conscientious citizen of the world.