5.11 Bargaining Update: Visa Reimbursements & More

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The OSU administration was found responsible for committing an unfair labor practice by using public resources to discourage our union organizing campaign. When we were in the process of forming our union, the OSU administration created and perpetuated misleading Q&A pages to interfere with our effort. Of course, we succeeded in forming our union despite their inappropriate interference.  

In seeking the judgement, we asked for the minimum award of $3.00. We filed the ULP complaint to set strong precedent in the interpretation of the law that the OSU administration violated, thus helping to prevent similar misdeeds committed against future organizing campaigns. The sanction we asked for was the one we got – that the administration cease and desist from such tactics and publicly acknowledge their violation of the law.

Regrettably, the administration’s handling of this legal case has left much to be desired. OSU spent far more than the $3.00 fine in legal fees over the past two years as they attempted to contest their culpability in this matter. These legal funds would have been better spent fulfilling our mission as an institution of higher education.  

You can find the order in emails sent from Jeaninne Cropley and Heather Horn on Tuesday and Thursday (respectively) and here.


UAOSU met with the administration bargaining team Monday, May 11 from 10-1 on Zoom. The administration brought counterproposals on BenefitsLeaves, a Letter of Agreement (LOA) on Prestigious Fellowships, and a LOA on Leaves. The UAOSU team brought counterproposals on Research SupportCompensation, a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on FY 2020 Merit Raisesa MOU on Compensation, and a LOA establishing a Child Care Task Force.  

We secured one important win; the administration has agreed to reimburse up to $500 in visa and/or SEVIS fees costs incurred by faculty, their partners, and their dependents. However, the administration failed to include any paid family and medical leave in their Leaves proposal, neglecting even to lock-in the 60 hours provided under current policy. We know that faculty and their families need paid family and medical leave now more than ever, and we can’t wait another three years for OSU to step up. We will continue to bargain for meaningful increases to available family and medical leave now while stepping that leave amount up over the next three years until we reach the full 12 weeks as mandated in state law by January 2023.

The administration continues to want to reach agreement on a potential salary cut plan during these negotiations. While we have reiterated our willingness to engage in salary cut negotiations to protect against layoffs and non-renewals, we can only reach a full agreement on salary cuts when we have enough information to make smart decisions about the scale of cuts required. Not only does the administration wish to wrap up all negotiation about salary cuts in the next 10 days, they also refuse to tie these cuts to guaranteed job stability for faculty.

We believe that is it wildly unfair of the OSU administration to demand faculty agree to salary cuts before we know the following:

  • the scale of state funding reductions
  • what Fall enrollment looks like
  • what reserves may be tapped into
  • where other savings can be realized
  • what sacrifice other employee groups (e.g. administrators & athletic coaches) will take

And to ask our bargaining unit members to make such steep financial sacrifices without even guaranteeing the jobs of our colleagues is unconscionable. While we remain willing to negotiate over the terms of potential salary cuts, we do not believe enough is known at this time to do so responsibly. For this reason, we continue to insist that salary cut negotiations begin this summer, and that, in the meantime, the administration does not prematurely non-renew faculty members.


We have agreed to add an additional session this Friday May 15, 2:30-3:30PM (Register Here) to continue to negotiate around the MOU on Compensation. Please join us. As we seek to wrap up this contract, your attendance shows that you expect a fair contract now–without being required to prematurely swallow salary cuts of up to 20% of total faculty salary.


We have made great gains in the course of negotiations and have almost reached an agreement with university administration. As we enter the final phases of negotiations on topics like Compensation, Benefits, Research Support and Family Leave, we can all play a role in showing our unity as we make our final push. We are sending email letters to President Ray, Provost Feser and the Board of Trustees letting them know that now is the time to reach a fair agreement with us.

Add your voice to the chorus and send a letter to OSU leadership telling them that it’s time to finalize a contract that values our commitment to students. The administration needs to hear from you — your message makes a difference!


Here’s a fuller account of the articles we exchanged:

UAOSU Proposals

Research Support

  • Agreement on a bridge funding pool equivalent to 1% of recovered F&A costs beginning in September 2022; we are seeking to affirm personnel support as the priority in funding decisions
  • Agreement on an FRA/RA job exchange (where fixed-term research faculty can move between jobs without an open search); we are seeking to include those who held a fixed-term research faculty job within the previous 6 months
  • Attempts to lock-in the current pilot project of a 3-credit tuition discount charged to grants for graduate employees who have reached candidacy


  • Agreement on a 3% merit pool for FY2020, retroactive to January 1 for 12-month employees and February 1 for 9-month employees
  • Agreement on no guaranteed raises for FY2021
  • Agreement on negotiating raises for FY2022-2024 in reopener negotiations beginning Spring 2021
  • Agreement on salary minimums for all fixed-term faculty, but we want salary minimums for promoted fixed-term faculty to go into effect September 2020, they are pushing to delay until September 2023

MOU on FY 2020 Merit Raises

  • Agreement on a 3% merit pool for FY2020, retroactive to January 1 for 12-month employees and February 1 for 9-month employees
  • We continue to insist these be paid out in June 2020 and applicable to everyone employed on the dates the raises are effective (January 1 for 12-month employees and February 1 for 9-month employees); the administration will not commit to a date on which these will be paid out and does not wish to include retroactive salary owed for employees who have left OSU since the effective dates

MOU on Compensation

  • We are seeking to tie potential salary cuts to guaranteed job stability for faculty
  • We agree that salary cuts, if necessary, should be progressive, but want to bargain details including duration, structure, and prior measures when we have more information

LOA on Child Care Task Force

  • We reached agreement on a task force to pursue options to secure affordable child care

Administration Proposals


  • Continued to require that Postdoctoral Scholars pay more for their own insurance in exchange for contributions to their families’ health insurance
  • Continued to assert administration’s desire to change health and retirement plans, but clarified that the administration will bargain about this in advance of implementation (not just provide notice)
  • Rejected UAOSU’s proposal to provide a $50/month stipend to remote faculty, upon request, to make up for lack of access to services on the Corvallis campus
  • Rejected UAOSU’s proposal to allow faculty who drop below 0.50 FTE to continue using their OSU tuition discount through the end of the academic year
  • Accepted our proposal to refund up to $500 of visa and SEVIS costs for faculty or their dependents


  • No paid family and medical leave
  • Reasserted restrictions that prevent fixed-term faculty from borrowing sufficient sick leave to access “backdoor” paid family and medical leave
  • Rejected a proposal to allow for sick leave exchange among employees

Our website provides a table with links to all proposals exchanged in bargaining.

Become a member of UAOSU and subscribe to our FacebookTwitter & Instagram! These actions all strengthen our ability to win a strong contract for each other.  

State Rep. Dan Rayfield supports a fair contract, read his letter to OSU supporting us on Facebook and Twitter!

We appreciate your support. You can find a full calendar of bargaining sessions on our website.

In solidarity,

Your bargaining team

Categories: bargaining