5th Bargaining Session Recap

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Letter from the President:

This past Friday, bargaining continued as both the GTFF and the university brought counter-proposals and questions. We are continuing to tentatively agree on some articles—this week on Article 15, regarding a change to the timeline of finding an arbitrator, and on Article 35, updating contact information for Employee Labor Relations (ELR). We’ve also tentatively agreed to some basic language updates for the contract.

We are still deep in discussions with the university on a number of issues and find that while we do disagree on some key issues and interests, we agree on others. The university has expressed some interest in our proposals regarding adding partners to the Grad Assistance Fund and providing more emergency funding for childcare, as well as some of our proposed language about GE rights and immigration.

We discussed the importance of workload allocation forms and records this week, which can be a great tool to gauge overwork if you are also tracking your hours. Make sure you’re informed about this current piece of our CBA!

The university’s proposals are also seeking to address some reasonable concerns related to the current format of the grievance process, and they have proposed some interesting solutions. We are examining the consequences these changes might have and hope to arrive at an agreement to improve the process and protect the dignity of GEs in the workplace.

The bargaining committee has also asked the university to clarify which of our original proposals they will agree to debate and which they will not, and to further clarify economic negotiations going forward, as their package deal (which we rejected at the 4th session) does not allow for the kind of negotiation we planned.

We do expect some economic discussion (money talk!) to be on the table at the next session. This could get contentious and will be informative about the university’s priorities, so come sit in and get the information first hand!

Stand with your bargaining committee—show the university how strong our union is!

Friday, 3/1
11AM – 3PM
Location TBA

If you can’t be there in person, tune in to our livestream and show your support on social media by tagging your posts with #GradsRAISEUOand #GTFF3544.

Let’s show up and show that we are united!


TL;DR:
We’re still deep in negotiations and getting into the weeds on grievance procedures, workload allocation forms, and language about university communication and information policies. Show up to the next session to learn more about how the economic negotiations will proceed. The bargaining committee remains committed to the principles of our RAISE platform and aim to improve conditions for all GEs!


In Solidarity,

Mike Magee
President of the Graduate Teaching Fellows Federation