5.22 Bargaining Update: Leaves & More
The UAOSU bargaining team and the administration team met 10am-5:15pm on Friday, May 22 on Zoom.
We were able to make significant progress, including reaching agreement on a few articles (see the full update below) and seeing real movement in the Benefits and Leaves article.
As we strive to reach agreement at our next session on May 27, the main outstanding issues remain:
Leaves: This was the first session where administration finally included any paid family and medical leave in their proposal. The administration’s proposal would provide for 80 hours of paid family and medical leave starting in 2021. This would expand the current leave offering by covering not only parental leave, but all family and medical leave. It would also expand the hours from 60 to 80. While we are heartened to see some movement here, we continue to believe we need meaningful paid family and medical leave now, even if it does not yet attain what will soon be Oregon law. Toward that end, we proposed 140 hours of paid family and medical leave beginning September 2020, stepping up to 6 weeks (240 hours) in September 2021, and finally reaching what will be the legally required 12 weeks (480 hours) in 2023. Providing 140 hours of paid family and medical leave can be accomplished by combining the current 60 hours of existing parental leave and 80 hours of COVID leave and making these permanent and applicable to all family and medical leave circumstances.
Faculty Salary Reductions: This session again focused largely on the administration’s proposal to have UAOSU greenlight uninformed salary cuts and preemptively relinquish our legal right to negotiate over the details. No other faculty at a public university in Oregon is being asked to accept this type of blank check proposal.
Their proposal still fails to protect job stability for fixed-term faculty. Notably, their proposal to bargain only when cuts exceed 15% of aggregate faculty salary reflects a reduction that is as arbitrary as their initial proposal to have the trigger for additional negotiations be 20%. Our counterproposals have asked that any cuts go to stabilizing faculty jobs, but their proposal does not include any accountability or transparency as to how our sacrificed salaries would be used. While we acknowledge that faculty salary reductions will likely be necessary, both sides remain too uninformed to negotiate the details of such a program. Both parties need more time and focused attention than is available during the bargaining of our current contract . We have tentatively agreed to 25 articles and 6 letters of agreement, and are down to just a handful of outstanding issues. The administration is explicitly holding final agreement on the contract as a whole in order to extract these preemptive cuts from us.
We hope to reach agreement at our next session this Wednesday, May 27 starting at 10am on Zoom (Register Here). We need you there to get it done! If we cannot reach agreement on Wednesday, we’ll need you to join us Friday at the Board of Trustees meeting to apply the pressure we’ll need to wrap up this contract this academic year.
As we enter the final phases of negotiations, 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!
Catch up on the details of all proposals exchanged during Monday’s session:
- Support for Prestigious Fellowships LOA
- Leaves LOA
- Supplement to Compensation Article MOU
- Implementation of Salary Program FY2020 MOU
- Research Support and Scholarship
After the first caucus, we exchanged further proposals:
The Administration offered counters on:
Our next session is this Wednesday, May 27 starting at 10am on Zoom (Register Here). We plan to keep the session open-ended, so check-in all day (and into the evening) to keep up with our progress. We need you to win a strong contract that secures meaningful paid family and medical leave and resists the pressure to accept preemptive salary reductions without the space to thoughtfully negotiate them.