CGE presented Article 10 and a Letter of Agreement (LOA) on Labor Meetings. Admin presented Articles 12 and 25.
CGE presented first, starting with Article 10 (notice of assignment, allocation of work space). We incorporated Admin’s language and made small clarifying changes. Admin read it over, and we have signed a Tentative Agreement (TA) on this Article! A tentative agreement means neither team is going to touch the article again until ratification. It’s like a save point!
Next, we presented language for the LOA that establishes labor meetings to discuss things like FTE adjustment, health and safety, and other topics. We incorporated changes Admin suggested last session, and got another TA. We’re on a roll!
Next, Admin presented Article 9 (Appointments). Again, they’ve proposed language that really distinctly defines term-to-term appointments, and doesn’t really provide any exceptions that require HR approval. They remain adamant that the reason for this is to allow the “flow of appointments” without unnecessary HR oversight. We see the HR approval process as a good way of preventing the same abuses of term-to-term appointments that we’re seeing now. When we asked Admin to come up with examples of appointments that would need HR approval based on their language, they struggled to find an adequate example…
After Article 9, Admin presented the associated LOA, in which they continue to add more and more caveats and definitions. This time, they included a passage allowing hourly work to be paired with an appointment, because certain funding sources won’t pay tuition and associated costs. The way it works now, hourly + appointment grad employees accrue sick leave at a different (slower) rate (due to their smaller FTE), and can only grieve offence that occur while the grad employees was working on tasks relating to their appointment. They have NO recourse for offences that occur while they do hourly work! Instead of hourly + appointment, CGE suggested an alternative where OSU waives or otherwise removes tuition costs for the grad employee, and shifts them to a full assistantship without hourly work. Admin said they would look into the requirements for such a move, and would let us know ASAP.
Admin was able to turn around Article 25 (health and safety) from our last session. They changed the language for “personal locator beacons” to “emergency contact equipment” and again pushed back on the OR-OSHA notification. Their reasoning for this was that they are not given any notice head of time, according to Chief Risk Officer Patrick Hughes. With this in mind, CGE decided to TA this article, too. Making some slow but steady progress!
Admin’s last proposal was Article 12 (tuition waiver). They agreed to shift the hour requirement for grad employees with a summer assistantship from 9 credit hours down to 3 credit hours. This is great progress toward normalizing summer term appointments! However, they pushed back on our “summer sandwich” tuition remission for graduate students who don’t have an assistantship but are still required to enroll in (and pay for!) classes just to be able to work on their research. Admin said they were interested in providing a service like this to all students, not just graduate employees, though they may only provide a remission of 1 credit hour for summer. They are waiting for Student Accounts to provide them with more information, and will report back in early June. We asked that they provide us with language when that decision is made, and that they also consider covering fees, just as they do during the academic year.
CGE inquired about the language classes for international students we proposed in an earlier session. We haven’t heard anything about that for a while, and asked for an update. Admin is in communication with the INTO program, and is in the planning stages of a proposal that will benefit all graduate students. As soon as there is more movement there, we’ll let you know!
After some internal discussion (including the CGE members who came to support us!), we came back to Admin with a response to the Article 9 language they proposed earlier. We feel like each iteration moves further away from CGE’s goals, and that we’d like to start over on Article 9, using the LOA as a guide. We’ll be proposing all new language when we next talk about Article 9, so watch out for that next session!
To recap, we’ve signed TAs for Article 22 (Parking), Article 10, Article 25, and one LOA. Only 28 more articles to go!
Here’s what we’ll each be presenting at our last session of the spring quarter!
Admin will have Articles 28 (finally!), 31, 12, and an update on the language courses.
CGE will have brand new language for Article 9, and the LOA relating to 9.
We only have one more bargaining session this quarter. Since it isn’t likely we’ll be finished before June 3rd, your bargaining team will continue bargaining into the summer for your rights as graduate employees! If you can make it to our last session this quarter, we’d love to see your smiling faces. Summer bargaining sessions will be posted as soon as we have the dates.
Our last session of the quarter is Friday, June 3rd from 2:15-4:00 PM in the McLean Room of Westminster House (101 NW 23rd).