Bargaining for Next Year:

  • Building A Large Team (25 members!)
    • Why should the bargaining team be big?
        • Have more researchers and information at the table
        • More diversity in personal experiences
        • Empowerment
  • Education & Research & Awareness
      • Educating the general membership: What is bargaining? How does it work? (On this note, there’s a workshop coming up where people can learn some bargaining basics, such as Mandatory, Non-Mandatory, & Non-/Permissible Subjects).
      • We would like to see more info at meetings about past bargaining victories, and what other universities have done so that we can better understand what’s possible / what to advocate for
      • Three levels of what we can ask for:
        • Mandatory Subjects, Permissible Subjects, Non-Permissible Subjects
        • Sometimes OSU argues it’s not part of “work life”
      • CGE bargains for all graduate students within collective bargaining unit
        Doesn’t include people who are not employees, like people on fellowships
      • Possibility of adding people on fellowships to our bargaining units (requires separate campaign and election, can’t be won through bargaining process)
      • Does include graduate employees even if they’re not CGE members
      • Need greater transparency around how many hours grads are actually working.
      • Are lack of childcare benefits leading grad employees to put off starting families?
      • Lack of COLA also makes it hard to live comfortably without a partner (who has a better-paying job).
      • Lack of transparency around student fees (what are we being charged for?)
  • Immediate Efforts
  • Supporting faculty bargaining: start talking to faculty and offer support for their bargaining process
  • Issues to Bargain Over
  • Retirement Matching. We want to ensure transparency with pensions: where would investments go? How can we make sure they’re ethical
  • Opting out: This is potentially a naive view (i.e. members would likely not be able to opt out)
  • Retirement is important to shoot for, but focusing too much on it could be detrimental if it means pulling from salaries
    • Pay increase is more important given housing cost increase
    • Starting the account / giving access to infrastructure is a first step
    • What should be a priority?
    • Retirement wouldn’t benefit international students as much
    • Some of us think payroll increase should be more prioritized than retiremen
      • Demanding a housing stipend. OSU needs to compensate our exorbitant rent prices
      • Childcare: The two-year wait at OSU for childcare access is ridiculous.
      • Transparency around grad worker hours: dispersing labor so that more people get GTAs/GRAs and others are not overworked. Bottom line: We need more grad workers.
        • Push for 1.0FTE for Summer Session.
      • Credit Hour Minimum: To get full-time GA position, you need to work 12 credit hours, but this is an unreasonable courseload for many people. And what about students (e.g. non-thesis students) who don’t have access to “padding” credits (reading & conference credits)?
      • Gender-Neutral Restrooms (expand)
  • Accessibility Maps in every building. Every building should have a map of accessibility features, emergency info
    • Safety:
      • The result of the fire in Burt Hall was the loss of massive hours of time invested in people’s research. But this is also a major safety issue. Can training improve safety around issues like this? Also, apparently OSU Facilities & Services can take up to one hour to respond to crises (e.g. pipes bursting in labs). This is unacceptable.
      • Also, enable testimonies during bargaining to be anonymous or protected in some way.
      • Codify protections against hate speech and hate activity. (“no nazis on campus.”)
      • More explicit protections against harassment and clear consequences.
      • Language defining clear behavioral standards so it’s clear when someone’s behavior is worth reporting
      • – Building safety – reports of falling ceilings in offices, no electricity
      • – Safety reports (including hazardous materials like asbestos) for all buildings should be widely available and easy to access (if they’re not already) (workers have a right to know what materials are in their workplace)
      • – More lighting on campus at night, and more emergency phones (few and far between)
      • – Gender neutral restrooms are a safety concern – they could all be gender neutral, especially in older buildings without dedicated GN restrooms – we need research on space use and frequency of restrooms – and GN restrooms should NOT also be the only accessible restrooms –these are separate needs and shouldn’t be combined/confused
      • – We need better ways for grad employees with mobility limitations to get to campus (SafeRide sometimes doesn’t come at all, or comes much later than expected; bus service is ok but shuts down at night)

Hardship Fund Feedback

  • Grad employees are denied access to government programs/services that would improve our quality of life because of FTE limitations (ex. SNAP)
  • – We should poll: how many members anticipate needing to use the hardship fund at some point in their graduate career? How many members experience different types of insecurity (ex. Food, rent, financial, medical)
  • – For bargaining: we should get data to quantify the value that graduate employees represent as assets to the university and the community (ex. We have raised tens of thousands of dollars from the brew-off alone)
  • – We could bargain directly with local realtors to offer reduced housing costs for members
  • – OSU could provide direct subsidies for our housing

20th Year Anniversary Celebration

  • – Focus on our future, not on the past – “foresight is 20-20”
  • – Don’t just celebrate old white men
  • – Labor leaders of today and tomorrow
  • – Full week of seminars, workshops, activities?
  • – Pair with Radical Imagination?
  • – New swag/merch (“ferch” = free merch) in different colors – we propose black and red (still suits most people, but isn’t the OSU colors) – need a combo that doesn’t show stains easily!
  • o Shirts – we should order more unisex shirts (“Mens” S-M-L-XL-2XL) since the “womens” cuts are most of our leftover stock, and larger quantity in sizes M through 2XL (can we find and support a company that will make larger sizes than these?)
  • Can we get some long-sleeved ones? Hoodies/sweatshirts? For colder days/winter

Tumblers, coffee mugs, thermoses? We could ask for a pay-what-you-can donation to offset increased production costs; grads drink so much coffee that it would be effective to raise awareness

  • More beanies (they’re great) – black is good but other colors would be nice too
  • Stickers and pins with cool designs (we could do a contest)
  • Sew-on patches?
  • We could align with existing labor holidays to do celebratory events.
  • We could push for OSU to recognize May Day as an official labor holiday.
  • We could invite former CGE members to join us for a forum about their experiences in the union.

Future projects:

  • – The CGE housing co-op could be exclusively for new students, month-to-month, to give them a place to land while they search for more permanent housing options
  • – How can we connect with incoming students to provide help with housing?
  • – Expanded online housing forum with dedicated sections – housing for new students, seeking roommates, subleases, etc.
  • More workshops! These are a way to bring people in and show them ways to get more involved
    • Retirement Workshop on February 12th!
    • More summer outreach
    • We collectively have a lot of skills that we can share with each other; let’s do that! Which also helps create more horizontal structure in our union
  • Mutual aid: this should be thought of as continuous and not just a one-time thing.
    • Hardship fund: look into investment possibilities to create a self-sustaining mutual fund (especially thinking about our future union relatives); e.g. 50k into an account with decent interest balancing average grants may be sustainable
    • Financial responsibility around the hardship fund: annual review for the sake of accountability, so we know how the money is being used.

Open Forum

ASOSU Elections open. Only 2 grads have ran out of 10 seats. Wednesdays from 7-8pm in SEC. Deadline to run is tomorrow (Friday the 1/31/2019). You can run just to drop later to keep white nationalists from getting a seat. How to run: go ASOSU elections.

Formalizing partnerships with faculty union, especially when in beginning stage

Are there lactations stations on campus for working parents? There is an accessibility map on OSU that has the lactation rooms. Something that the working parents caucus can follow up on?

A Chant” “Who are we, we are CGE! Working grads

Increase our social media presence! The union is Us!