The union says the full-time faculty will be reduced by more than 20 percent.

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – The union of full-time faculty members at Point Park University is speaking out against layoffs given to 17 employees.

In a Zoom meeting Friday, the union said between the layoffs and the departures of faculty who opted to retire, the full-time faculty will be reduced by more than 20 percent.

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Photography professor Ben Schonberger, who received a layoff notice, says the university is trying to pit faculty members against each other.

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“The blame that has been put on senior faculty for not taking a retirement is really a cruel thing to do in an effort to save younger faculty the possibility of having a job and some senior faculty might not be able to retire,” said Schonberger.

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The university says the layoffs are necessary due to financial difficulties from the pandemic, and they’re allowed by the collective bargaining agreement. The union disputes that.