By: KDKA-TV News Staff

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — In February, 17 full-time faculty members at Point Park University received nonrenewal letters from the university.

After an arbitration hearing, an arbitrator ruled on Thursday, May 6 that Point Park must rescind the 17 layoff notices sent out, according to the Newspaper Guild of Pittsburgh TNG-CWA Local 38061 which represents Point Park faculty.

The union publicly spoke out against the layoffs at the beginning of April, saying that the layoffs would increase tensions between faculty members and lead to a nearly 20% reduction in faculty at the university.

READ MORE: Point Park Faculty Union Speaks Out After Layoffs

At that point, Point Park University leadership maintained that the layoffs were necessary due to financial burdens caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

Court documents indicate that arbitration proceedings took place throughout the month of April, and an arbitrator heard both sides’ interpretations of the collective bargaining agreement that is used to determine employment standards at the university and settle disputes.

“The University shall retain and reinstate the 17 faculty members involved herein,” the arbitrator wrote in the ruling.