Next Session: June 6th, 11am – 2pm [Westminster House or Zoom]

CGE members: Zoom login info can be found here. OSU refused to agree to remote access during ground rules, therefore we have foregone ground rules to ensure ALL graduate employees can access bargaining.

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Securing & Defending Graduate Employees’ Wellbeing
2024 CGE Bargaining Platform

Graduate employees are facing undue hardship as a result of skyrocketing inflation, predatory housing markets, overwork, insufficient pay, and inadequate workplace conditions. As a coalition, we must improve the overall wellbeing of graduate employees by addressing the significant issues our membership has identified. We need workplace safety, financial stability, and a balance between responsibilities as a student and a worker. Oregon State University’s actions impact not only its graduate employees, but the Corvallis community as a whole. To succeed in contract negotiations on these issues, we must address them as a community of academics, a community of workers, and a community of Corvallis residents. Together, we can secure the conditions graduate employees need, benefit the greater Corvallis community, and make Oregon State University the institution that we all deserve. We are not commodities of the workforce. We are people. The University must recognize that and respect all it entails.


Graduate employees deserve institutional support and security in their employment and academics. Our current conditions contribute to severe burdens in all facets of our lives. Many graduate employees face job insecurity over the summer, further affecting their ability to afford basic needs. A lack of substantive improvements and accountability further contributes to these difficulties. Unjust stresses faced by graduate employees across the nation are an affront to the trust we place in institutions of higher education. Inadequate salaries and resources offered by the administration do not allow for graduate employees to have healthy, robust, and well-supported lives. Financial and job security are essential to graduate employees’ wellbeing.


Graduate employees are vital members of a broader community. Issues that affect graduate employees affect the Corvallis area and vice versa. Corvallis has a lack of access to affordable childcare and available housing. The University relies on our community’s limited resources to meet graduate employees’ basic needs. Corvallis deserves to be a home, not a struggle. 

Within the graduate employee community at Oregon State University, certain groups are being starkly underserved. BIPOC, LGBTQIA2S+, international, and other marginalized graduate employee groups should be provided the security and resources they need to do their work. Amidst pre-existing insecurity, these groups face additional hardships and lack of equity. If we do not address the issues that are significant burdens for underserved groups, Oregon State University will not be able to support the diverse community we all value. 


Safety is vital to wellbeing. Not only do we need effective training to perform our work duties safely, we also need a safe workplace, protection from harassment and bullying, and the ability to make use of health resources. Over a quarter of surveyed graduate employees reported that they or someone they know at Oregon State University has experienced bullying or discrimination in the workplace. This shows that Oregon State University still has a long way to go before all graduate employees feel safe and welcome in their work environments. We need to continue to increase accountability for these kinds of behaviors and improve the processes by which graduate employees can seek support and remediation. Over half of surveyed graduate employees report having been unable to pursue medical treatment due to prohibitive costs, and the vast majority of graduate employees surveyed report not using sick leave due to inadequate policies and processes. This inability to attend to our health indicates a need to strengthen our existing resources and cultivate a culture that values the health and wellbeing of graduate employees as whole people.

Testimony is used to demonstrate the hardships faced by Graduate Employees and to justify the language that the CGE Bargaining Team brings to the table when negotiating with OSU. Check out our bargaining updates page to see what language we will be working on in future sessions, and please submit testimony that could be relevant. You will have the option to read out the testimony yourself, to ask someone to read it on your behalf, and to remain anonymous if you so choose.