Anti-Discrimination Working Group


Taking Action for Racial Justice

In conjunction with our union’s initial call for expanded use of our collective bargaining power to refuse to enforce in racist, anti-Black, and classist policies and practices regarding policing, members are now developing specific demands aimed at building long-lasting work to defund police and instead invest in community-based safety and wellness, both on campus and in the broader community. For more information, check out this page, and to get involved with this and much more, email!

Annual Equity Survey

Taking Action Against Sexual Harassment

In 2018, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine (NASEM) released a report showing that rates of sexual harassment and assault are pervasive throughout academia – second, in fact, only to the U.S. military. In equity surveys we conducted during the 2018-2019 academic year among postdocs and academic student employees (ASEs), we found similarly high rates, with 60% of women, 40% of men, and 80% of non-binary people reporting experiences with harassment while at UW.

Check out our poster, #WeToo: Taking on Sexual Harassment Through Collective Action on the critical role of unionization for addressing the structural roots of sexual harassment in academia.

Our Local has a strong history of taking action to address these serious issues. In 2019, hundreds of Postdocs and allies turned out to a powerful work session on sexual harassment held by Seattle City Council Member Teresa Mosqueda, and subsequently won some of the strongest anti-harassment protections in the country. And in 2018, we fought for and won one of the most innovative prevention programs in the country — the Empowering Prevention and Inclusive Communities (EPIC) training program.

  • EPIC is a peer-to-peer training jointly run between our union and the university and is enshrined in both the ASE contract and postdoc contract.
  • We run an innovative evidence-informed curriculum that empowers participants with concrete skills for creating safer workplaces, interrupting harassment, and getting support.
  • In Fall 2019 alone, EPIC has reached 800 ASEs and postdocs in departments and units across all three campuses of University of Washington.
  • After going through the training, 97% of participants consistently report that they are likely or very likely to take action to address harassment if it occurs in their workplace.
  • Read more key takeaways from the program’s inaugural year at our 2018-19 academic year report. Also check out the poster EPIC presented at the 2019 NASEM Summit on Prevention of Sexual Harassment held at UW.
  • For more information or to schedule a training in your department or unit, email

More info and news

Get involved

To learn more or get involved with the Anti-Discrimination Working Group, please email anti-discrimination@uaw4121.