Last week, we met with the Administration to continue bargaining non-economic articles. We mutually agreed to finish bargaining all the non-economic articles until they are complete, then holding off on economic topics until September.
The topics discussed during the day were evaluations, past practices, work environment, nondiscrimination, no strike lockout, and layoff. We were able to reach agreement on language for work environment, which will allow GAs access to appropriate work space and private space for meeting with students/coworkers.
The major sticking point with regard to nondiscrimination is whether or not a GA should have to ability to grieve discriminatory issues. We are getting close on some of the other topics and hope to be able to TA them within the next week or two.
We have heard from many of you about positions being eliminated or reduced. To learn the full extent of cuts, we have formally requested information, under the Public Employees Collective Bargaining Act, about the cutting of GA lines and the possible replacement of those positions with hourly workers. We need this information to advocate for GAs whose positions are being cut or whose tuition remission is being taken away. The Administration Team indicated that they do not have this information, and that this information does not exist.
As a union, we are coming together to make sure these situations do not slip through the cracks because we have the opportunity to advocate for our jobs. Are cuts happening in your department? Please reach out.
Finally, we once again proposed the Academic Freedom language from both faculty union contracts and the existing university policy for faculty. Admin indicated that they would be willing to discuss the issue, but may still decline to agree to include language to address it in the contract. Have you felt the need to express a controversial view on relevant subject matter in the classroom, and/or been retaliated against for doing so?