UAW 4121

Dear UAW Member,

We are reaching out about two important updates affecting ASEs and Postdocs:

  1. After consistent organizing led by our International Solidarity Workgroup, the university has sent out formal guidance to departments about non-US citizen ASEs conducting work from their home countries (without a visa)
  2. Secondly, find updates below about the Trump Administration’s revocation of 1,000 Chinese student and scholar visas. Everyone please take a moment to sign this petition to our university administration.

The university’s formal guidance to departments, confirming non-US citizen ASEs can conduct work and receive payment while abroad, has been sent to graduate program advisors and coordinators at individual departments. All departments have received this official guidance as of Friday (9/11) afternoon, and departments are expected to disseminate it within their units as soon as possible.

You should receive more detailed information from your department soon. If you are working from abroad for Autumn 2020 and do not get an update by next week, please contact your department administrators (e.g. program advisors/coordinators, HR administrators). Additionally, if you get conflicting information from other sources (e.g. your advisor), please document as many details as possible about the information you were given and contact the International Solidarity Workgroup at We will gather instances of misinformation about international ASEs working abroad to ensure a consistent message from the University.

In reaction to reports that the Trump administration has revoked the visas of more than 1,000 Chinese students and scholars, UAW-represented academic workers across the US are calling on our universities to take steps to protect international researchers. It is clear that the Trump administration’s enforcement of this rule is more about targeting and scapegoating international scholars than protecting sensitive intellectual property.

Please take a moment to sign this petition to our university administration to protect and support affected Chinese students and scholars. We are currently working to find out if any UW students and scholars have been affected by this action. Regardless, all affected individuals deserve due process, and we are calling upon UW and other institutions to:

  • Continue paying the targeted individuals despite their visa revocations, so they are not rendered destitute by allegations that might be political.
  • Provide legal resources so our colleagues can adequately defend themselves.
  • Create a rapid-response task force composed of international students and scholars to support international employees and advise university administration.

UAW academic workers are committed to protecting each other and sharing information and resources, and union leaders will help file grievances in cases where the union contract has been violated.

Our International Solidarity Workgroup meets weekly, and for the month of September we meet on Mondays at 1pm. Email us at to get involved (ideally with a non-UW email address). Reach out to the International Solidarity Workgroup if you are affected by the university’s new work abroad policy, the latest visa revocations, or if you have any other questions.

In Solidarity,
Douglas Avella-Castro
Leandro Casiraghi
Amanda Clouser
Monica Cortés Viharo
Meg Drouhard
Max Friedfeld
Vern Harner
Dan Hart
Amzi Jeffs
Sam Kastner
Kyle Kubler
Kristin McCowan
Emily Myers
Anzela Niraula
Jacob O’Connor
Elena Pandres
Nayon Park
Marissa Parker
David Parsons
Shua Sanchez
Paige Sechrest
Solmaz Shakerifard
Sam Sumpter
Judy Twedt
Jon Witt