Bargaining Update: Get your remote and flexible work requests in ASAP!
Your UAOSU bargaining team and the administration team met for three sessions this week to address COVID and campus reopening, as well as our salary reopener. In these sessions, two major advances were achieved. After months of refusing to discuss pay inequity through our negotiations, the administration has finally agreed to allocate funds beginning in 2024.
A signed agreement on Remote and Flexible Work was achieved, and this means that if you would like to request remote work in the coming term, you should begin the process immediately. Contact your Constituency VP or Union Representative or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you need help with this process.
These gains were made possible thanks to our membership. If you haven’t joined yet, you can do so at uaosu.org/join.
Each session is described below:
Monday, August 23
In this session, the administration team again refused to respond to our proposal on classroom policies, insisting that faculty do not have the right to implement such safety policies on their own. They also presented two proposals, on Vaccination Rate and Remote and Flexible Work.
Wednesday, August 25, 9-10am
In this session, UAOSU presented two proposals:
- Vaccination Rate — we again maintain that vaccination data should be provided at the finest level of aggregation possible while maintaining individual privacy. While vaccination rates for students at OSU seem to be remarkably high, it is important that faculty can ensure safety for themselves and the students in their classes.
- Face Coverings — While the conversation needs to continue over what rights individual faculty have to establish health and safety requirements in our classrooms and other work spaces, this proposal has shifted to allow that faculty can continue the existing face covering requirement through the fall term. Faculty and students need a sense of stability and clarity as we go into this term.
We have also signed an agreement on the Remote and Flexible Work MOU. This codifies the existing process to request remote or flexible work, but adds a process for appeal — if your supervisor denies your request, you can ask to have it immediately appealed to the next higher authority. We have heard that some units are indicating that remote work requests must be accompanied by EOA paperwork or ADA accommodations — our agreement indicates that this process is open to all faculty, and allows ample reasons to appeal a denial: your own health, safety, or medical concerns, the health or care of your family or children, or government restrictions preventing your travel, such as difficulty getting a transit visa.
Because the term is looming, please contact your supervisor immediately if you’d like to seek remote or flexible work arrangements to start the process. Our union will share additional information to help guide you through this process in the coming weeks.
In this session, the administration team presented two proposals. Their compensation proposal accepted our proposed increase of 0.5% — but delayed this increase until 2022. They continued to strike anything beyond what administration considers merit, such as salary freezes, increases written into grants, and increases to salary minimums. However, they did bring a letter of agreement that indicates that they will create an equity pool equivalent to 0.5% of faculty salary in Fiscal Year 2024 to address salary inequity. While this number may seem inadequate, it is a tangible acknowledgment of the work our institution has to do in this area.
Your bargaining team was able to take a caucus and produce counterproposals, which we presented just before the end of the session. Our compensation proposal shifts the extra 0.5% in 2022 to go to all eligible faculty. Our letter of agreement proposal brings back the idea of a joint labor management committee to do the work of analyzing salary inequity and determining where that allotted funding should go. Based on conversation at the table, we have also asserted that both parties will bargain over increases to salary minimums, to be put into place by July 1, 2024.
The next salary bargaining session is noon–1pm on Monday, August 30 on Zoom. We expect the administration team to bring back counterproposals. Even if you can only drop by for half an hour, your attendance matters: show the administration that faculty are watching this process. If you have attended one of our sessions before, invite a colleague to join you, and please share what you learn with any colleagues who are unable to attend.
We appreciate your support.
Your bargaining team