• Reminders

  • HCAFA Executive Committee monthly meetings listed below. Meetings start at 9:30 AM. All HCAFA members are invited to join the sessions. Dates as follows:

    • April 28
    • May 12 (TBD)
    • June 23 (TBD)
  • For information, contact HCAFA President Robert Allare at hcafapresident@gmail.com Unfortunately, our local Illinois Education Association office in Palatine is closed due to the pandemic, but messages (847.359.0300) are forwarded to us. For an emergency situation, you may contact the HCAFA President via email (hcafapresident@gmail.com) or IEA's central office in Springfield at https://ieanea.org/ieaconnect/ for telephone and live chat during their limited weekday hours as well as the email option. 

HCAFA Newsletter – April 2023

Below is a link to the newsletter:

Harper Adjuncts

Come join us at the Tap House Grill in downtown Palatine on Saturday, February 25th from 1 to 4pm.

Student debt relief update

(From the IEA e-mail newsletter dated April 28th)

More good news on student debt relief through the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program (PSLF). The “pause” on making student loan payments has been extended to Aug. 31. This means that not making payments during the “pause” will not jeopardize your eligibility for PSLF and there will be no interest charged on your loan during that period. 

One more date to keep in mind: If you want to get a previous denial of your PSLF debt relief waived, you must apply by Oct. 31. Until then, educators are eligible for PSLF if they have made 120 payments while working for a certified employer.

  • It does not matter what kind of loan you had;
  • It does not matter if you have been denied forgiveness in the past;
  • And, it does not matter if some payments were not previously credited.

For more information on:

  • PSLF in general
  • On the “pause”, same URL as above, scroll down to: I have not made student loan payments during the cares act payment pause. How does that affect my PSLF payment count?

If you, or anyone you know, has gotten student debt relief from either PSLF or TLF, please let us know by contacting Frank Brooks. We’d love to feature such successes in future communications from the Higher Ed Council!

And don’t forget that IEA members have access to a free student loan benefit, the NEA Student Debt Navigator, powered by Savi. Sign up at neamb.com/GetNavNEA to receive personalized advice from student debt experts and to gain access to Savi’s e-filing function, which helps eliminate the common mistakes that bar many applicants from receiving forgiveness.

How your dues are allocated

What do I get for one dues dollar?

The below PDF document shows how one IEA dues dollar ($1) is allocated to support and represent members and affiliates in their efforts to achieve IEA’s mission.


The latest issue is in Harper mailboxes.  HCAFA encourages you to be involved in your union.  The Harper Adjunct Advocate lets you know when HCAFA meetings are and how you can help.

Now is the time to show your support!

Adjunct Advocate 53 0919 v14n3



The anti-union Illinois Policy Institute has again increased its efforts to encourage Association members to abandon their membership.  IPI backed the recent Janus case in the U.S. Supreme Court which found “fair share” provisions illegal.  The group supports the privatization of public education and sees weakening of unions as a way to promote that goal. If the IPI approaches you with “alternatives to unions,” please contact HCAFA for the reality of its campaign funded by the big money associated with education secretary Betsy DeVos.


The full-time staff union at College of Du Page is engaged in tough negotiations with its administration.  COD has placed advertisements for teaching positions which are primarily aimed at adjuncts with the goal of using them as strikebreakers should the full-time staff at COD have a job action.  HCAFA encourages adjuncts—members or not—to see through this transparent manipulation of professionals for what it is:  recruitment of “scab” workers and an intimidation of our COD colleagues.


Sara Stephens gave an in-depth presentation on the penalties those who have both SURS and Social Security are likely to face.  The penalties are placed on two different sets of teachers:  The first is on those who have worked fewer than 30 years for Social Security and have also worked under SURS.  The second is on those who receive spousal benefits.  In both cases there is a radical reduction in benefits paid out by Social Security.

Sara  Stephens urged us to contact our congressmen and urge them to vote for the Social Security Fairness Act (HR 141 and S925).  Both of those bills would repeal the “windfall deduction program.”

Numbers to call:  Senate DC Switchboard 202 224-3121

Senator Durbin in Chicago office – 312 353-4952

Senator Duckworth in Chicago – 312886-3506

House DC Switchboard, 202 225-3121


Click below for an information sheet prepared for our members.


For more information on the offsets, go to the link below.


Understand Your Retirement! Learn about the Offset Penalties at the Next HCAFA Exec Committee Meeting.

  • HCAFA members:
    Will you get both Social Security and SURS benefits when you retire?  No!  If  you take your SURS benefits, your Social Security benefits will be decreased.  Not fair?  Come find out more from Sara Stephens at the upcoming HCAFA meeting this Friday, April 26th from 10-12:30 at Harper in  L200. Sara has been researching about and working to eliminate the GPO and WEP offset penalties that people are hit with if they have paid into both Social Security and SURS.  Please note that Sara is not giving financial advice at all, but is giving out information that many are not aware of.  In doing so, she is trying to repeal these repressive government penalties.  Come hear all about it!  A light lunch will be served.
    And, a gentle reminder that Wed., April 24th at 4 pm is deadline to vote for IEA Higher Ed Council positions.  If you did not receive the light blue envelope from IEA or have misplaced it, please contact Kim Trader at IEA:  1-800-252-8076 X2250 or kim.trader@ieanea.org.

Read the May Issue of The Harper Adjunct Advocate to Understand the Importance of May 1 to Unions

In the May issue of The Harper Adjunct Advocate, Dwain Thomas, HCAFA Exec Committee member and Harper librarian, gives a personal account of what May Day means.   This issue also explains the cancellation of assignments as laid out in our contract.

Harper Adjunct Advocate – May 2019

March Adjunct Advocate Focuses on Problems Facing Adjuncts at Harper

The latest issue of The Harper Adjunct Advocate has the complete report from the Achieving the Dream Study that focused on adjuncts at Harper and at 5 other community colleges.   The report equates adjunct success with student success.

The issues are the issues that HCAFA has concentrated on for many years.  We all know the issues.  We are hopeful that Harper will address the problems in a meaningful way.

For the newsletter and Achieving the Dream report, click on the attachments below.

Adjunct Advocate -March 2019

Adjunct Advocate March 2019 – Achieving the Dream Report 2019