Friday, May 3, 2019
In this email:
- Seattle City Council Session on May 8th
- Bargaining update
- Postdoc stories
- Update about FMLA premiums
Seattle City Council Session on May 8th
Hundreds of Postdocs have RSVPd. On May 8th, Seattle City Council’s Committee on Housing and Workers Rights – chaired by councilmember Teresa Mosqueda – is convening a Work Session on UW Postdoc working conditions. The Work Session will highlight how discrimination and harassment connects with every feature of our work (such as economic insecurity and vulnerabilities due to international status), and how we are negotiating for solutions that follow national recommendations.
We had two bargaining sessions this week and passed multiple comprehensive proposals covering the remaining articles of the contract. We discussed how the remaining articles (wages, healthcare benefits, childcare, leaves and others) should follow national recommendations and how the proposals we’ve made are designed to address serious inequities that many Postdocs face.
Here are the articles we tentatively agreed to:
Side Letter – Sexual Harassment Training: we’ve created a training program where Postdocs will receive peer-led evidence based trainings on reducing, preventing, and recognizing sexual harassment.
Transportation: Postdocs will receive the same access to car and bike parking as all other employees and a Postdoc will be a voting member of the University Transportation Committee. Reminder, the U-Pass benefit will be addressed in a separate section of the contract.
Our next bargaining date is May 6th starting at 9:00 a.m.
Every day we don’t have a contract, Postdocs are at risk
One important issue that is still unresolved is the fact that UW is denying adequate health insurance to Postdocs on paid-direct funding. This has real life costs and impacts Postdocs’ ability to do research. Read about the stories of two paid direct UW Postdocs here and here. Meanwhile we continue to fight for comprehensive health insurance for all Postdocs and a more equitable UW.
Update on unfair labor practice concerning Washington Paid Family & Medical Leave deductible.
Starting in January 2019, the UW has been charging Postdocs a small premium as part of the new Washington Paid Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). Because the UW charged the premiums absent bargaining, we filed an unfair labor practice charge with the state labor board. UW has since decided to reimburse premiums to Postdocs; we will keep you apprised of any developments.
The UW Postdocs United / UAW 4121 Bargaining Committee
Tina Angerer, Bioengineering
Pamela Baker, Biological Structure
Matthew Crane, Chemistry
Marina Dütsch, Earth and Space Sciences
Max Friedfeld, Chemistry
Hannah Horowitz, Atmospheric Sciences
Megan Ivory, Physics
Ajay Jajodia, Medical Genetics
Andrew Jenkins, Chemistry
Jiae Lee, Biochemistry
Michael Mack, Chemistry
Kelly Patton, Physics
Cristi Proistosescu, Joint Institute for the Study of Atmosphere and Ocean
Abdul Basit Shaikh, Pharmaceutics
Thomas Smith, Medical Genetics
Michael Taylor, Bioengineering
Jian Wang, Chemistry
Alex White, Psychology
Huajun Xu, Chemistry