More than 100 employees at Western Illinois University were expected to be laid off.
A memo that went out to faculty and staff indicated that 110 non-instructional employees were being laid off, according to a spokesperson with the Illinois Federation of Teachers. The memo told workers that those being included in the layoffs would be notified during the week of April 18, 2016.
In the letter to employees, President Thomas said despite “drastic reductions to spending” the layoffs were “necessary to protect the university’s cash resources,” according to a report by the Herald Whig.
“In spite of our best efforts to conserve financial resources, without an appropriation from our state government, the university will face even greater financial challenges,” Thomas reportedly said in the letter.
The university’s faculty president, Bill Thompson, said that the layoffs would result in the students being “shortchanged.”
“It is unconscionable that President Thomas would balance the budget on the backs of our hardworking civil service employees at Western Illinois University before working with us on solutions,” Thompson said in a statement. “By putting faculty and staff last on his list of priorities, President Thomas is shortchanging our students, who are already being shortchanged by our Governor, who refuses to fund their college dreams.”
Thompson noted that Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner vetoed funding for tuition assistance and proposed a 25% cut to higher education.
The Herald-Whig reported that employees being laid off would get a 30-day notice.