Great news! After hours of bargaining over the last 36 hours, we reached a tentative agreement with the University’s bargaining team this evening. In light of the tentative agreement, we will not be holding the strike authorization vote scheduled for tomorrow (Friday, June 3).

The agreement makes progress in all of the general areas making up our bargaining agenda, breaks new ground in several areas, and includes no takeaways. Winning such a strong agreement in the current climate is a remarkable accomplishment that would not have been possible without the tireless efforts of members across campus to take action on behalf of a fair contract in recent months.

We will follow up tomorrow with more details about the contract and the ratification process. Here’s a summary of the highlights:

  • Ground-breaking relief on the rising cost of un-waived fees: ASEs currently eligible for a tuition waiver will receive a compensation adjustment to reflect projected increases in the Building Fee and Services and Activities Fee next academic year.
  • Preservation of ASE health benefits with no premium increase for ASEs or their dependents, despite the cost of the plan going up nearly 14%.
  • First-time ever ASE childcare reimbursement benefit of up to $600 per quarter (for ASEs not receiving support through the Childcare Assistance Program). UW will commit $25,000 to this program for the 2011/12 academic year.
  • Commitment to protect current level of Arts & Sciences writing and tutoring services, pending approval of the intended budget.
  • Improved ability for ASEs to raise and address concerns regarding the effect of class size on the quality of instruction.
  • One-year agreement, expiring April 30, 2012.
  • This tentative agreement came about as a result of tremendous activism and involvement by members throughout our contract campaign. In the past two days, the University’s bargaining team has showed significant creativity and willingness to reach a settlement that addressed our concerns. These discussions also established a strong foundation for us to continue to pursue important issues in the coming year and to build on this year’s successes in bargaining next year.

    Also our last membership meeting of the academic year will take place Thursday, June 9th at 3:00 p.m. in Smith 304. All current members may attend, and membership may be obtained at the meeting. As always, children are welcome.

    Thanks for all you have done.

    In Solidarity,

    UAW 4121 Bargaining Committee
    David Parsons, English
    Jessica Pikul, Chemistry
    Evette Jasper, Education
    Dylan Mayer, Philosophy
    Lei Cheng, Mechanical Engineering
    Jean Dinh, Medicinal Chemistry
    Toni Ferro, Human Centered Design and Engineering
    Garrett Strain, Odegaard Writing & Research Center
    Phil Harding, Neurobiology and Behavior