Posts tagged graduate students

    Graduate Unions: Why Student Workers at University of California, Temple, More Are Striking

    March 27, 2023 // HELU was founded in 2021 in an effort to fill those shoes. At a digital summit that July, members of 75 unions and labor organizations convened to draft a “vision platform” laying out everything from their legislative commitments (like Sen. Bernie Sanders’s College for All Act) to their support of student debt cancelation. The endgame is a unified academic labor movement capable of securing public investment and reorienting higher ed to “prioritize people and the common good over profit and prestige.” To date, 130 unions and affiliated groups representing over half a million workers have endorsed the platform. The first step in realizing this vision, says Jaime, who attended the 2021 summit, is to build union density. “Transforming academia is not going to happen in one single contract campaign. We have to organize workers in every single university in order to achieve real change,” he says.

    Chicago Will ‘Bargain in Good Faith’ After Grad Workers Vote to Unionize

    March 20, 2023 // University of Chicago graduate student workers have voted 1,696 to 155 to unionize, the National Labor Relations Board announced Thursday evening. The NLRB said there were 3,200 eligible voters. Lee said in her statement that, “Of the 9,904 graduate students at the university, 3,287 were eligible to vote based on their current or recent appointments under the election petition” the union filed.

    MIT Grad Fellows Prohibited From Unionizing, NLRB Official Says

    March 15, 2023 // About 1,500 graduate students are prohibited from unionizing at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology because they’re not university employees, a National Labor Relations Board official ruled. NLRB Regional Director Laura Sacks said in a decision issued late Monday that grad students at the university who aren’t currently teaching or research assistants can’t be represented by the United Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers of America union.

    Rutgers faculty authorizes a strike as negotiations continue

    March 15, 2023 // Members of Rutgers AAUP-AFT and Rutgers Adjunct Faculty Union voted Friday to authorize a strike following a 10-day vote. Rutgers AAUP-AFT represents full-time faculty, graduate workers, postdoctoral associates, and counselors, while the Rutgers Adjunct Faculty Union represents part-time lecturers. A strike authorization does not mean that the educators will walk from the classroom. While students are on spring break this week, the two sides will be at the negotiating table. If the educators strike, it would affect all three campuses – Camden, Newark, and New Brunswick – and be the first faculty strike in the school’s 256-year history.

    Duke to Challenge Ph.D. Students’ Right to Unionize

    March 14, 2023 // “Duke provides significant financial and programmatic support for Ph.D. students to help them reach their academic goals. That support is very different from an employment relationship. Duke will seek to present evidence demonstrating that its graduate students in their academic programs are not employees, and that the NLRB’s 2016 reasoning was incorrect.”

    You may have heard of the ‘union boom.’ The numbers tell a different story

    March 2, 2023 // Headline writers began declaring things like, "Employees everywhere are organizing" and that the United States was seeing a "union boom." In September, the White House asserted "Organized labor appears to be having a moment." However, the Bureau of Labor Statistics recently released its union data for 2022. And their data shows that — far from a resurgence — the share of American workers in a union has continued to decline. Last year, the union membership rate fell by 0.2 percentage points to 10.1% — the lowest on record. This was the second year in a row that the union rate fell. Only one in ten American workers is now in a union, down from nearly one in three workers during the heyday of unions back in the 1950s.

    Workers exert leverage in tight labor market: Strikes doubled in 2022

    February 23, 2023 // About 224,000 total people walked off the job in 424 strikes, up from 279 strikes in 2021. Most of them were demanding better pay and healthcare. Fast food workers with the "Fight for $15" campaign and Starbucks baristas organized over 100 strikes. In one of the most memorable, a number of Starbucks workers at stores across the country refused to man the espresso machines on "Red Cup Day" — the start of the profitable holiday drink season for the company. But education workers put the biggest stamp on labor action. About 60% of the workers striking in 2022 were educators, meaning the spotlight continues to be on frontline sectors after healthcare workers drove most of the action 2021, during the height of the pandemic.

    Unionized Dartmouth College Students Win $21 Wage

    February 21, 2023 // “I’m on financial aid. And most of what I earn goes towards paying for my college and making sure that I can graduate with as little debt as possible,” he said. Higher pay for him would be “monumental,” he added, a chance to have a social life and get some sleep. Solange Acosta, another student who spoke at the rally, said, “what I’m asking for, what we we’re all asking for here, is a chance to be a student first and a worker second.” In a statement released Saturday, the union said, “We now have a tentative agreement on the full package proposal with the College,” including a $21/hour base wage, annual wage increases tied to the cost of college, and mental health and sick pay. Students working as area managers in the dining facilities covered by the contract would be included in the bargaining unit, a demand the college had previously been reluctant to accept.

    Temple withdraws free tuition for grad students on strike and gives them until March 9 to pay

    February 10, 2023 // The move comes amid the second week of a strike by the Temple University Graduate Student Association, which represents about 750 members, although Temple maintains that more than 80% of graduate student teaching and research assistants are continuing to work. That would mean fewer than 150 students are on strike.

    ‘It’s about damn time’: College workers organize amid nationwide labor unrest

    February 8, 2023 // A historic strike at the University of California kicked things off in November. And the six-week standoff among 48,000 campus workers, a broader surge in labor strikes across industries, a depleted pandemic workforce and a friendlier atmosphere in Washington has culminated in a wave of uprisings.+