Bargaining Updates

Please click below for a *brief* summary of what happened in recent bargaining sessions for Academic Researchers, Academic Student Employees, Postdocs and Student Researchers. You can click here for more detailed info on the latest proposals for each unit. 

Your Title Goes Here

Your content goes here. Edit or remove this text inline or in the module Content settings. You can also style every aspect of this content in the module Design settings and even apply custom CSS to this text in the module Advanced settings.

Your Title Goes Here

Your content goes here. Edit or remove this text inline or in the module Content settings. You can also style every aspect of this content in the module Design settings and even apply custom CSS to this text in the module Advanced settings.

December 14, 2022

Today’s mediation session, which went from 12pm until 11pm, yielded a verbal offer from the University which we believe, if put in writing, represents incredibly significant improvements to our pay and benefits. We are excited to discuss it extensively with members to decide if we should reach a tentative agreement.
The University’s verbal offer on wages is as follows. For TAs, the University stated they would agree to raise total compensation for nine month appointments (including a possible combination of wages and stipends that are guaranteed in the contract) to $34,000 on all campuses except for UCLA, UC Berkeley, and UCSF. At those three campuses, total compensation will reach $36,500 by the end of the contract–again, October 1, 2024. This would be for the first step on the TA pay scale. With the experience-based step increases that we have already won, many of us will make more than that. Over the life of the agreement, this represents a 46 percent increase at Santa Cruz, Davis, Merced, Riverside, Santa Barbara, Irvine, and San Diego. It represents a 57 percent wage increase at UCLA, UCSF and UC Berkeley.
For SRs, by the end of the contract–October 1, 2024–the University has proposed raising the wage scale for a 12 month appointment to range from $34,564 to $52,200 depending on the GSR’s step. With experience-based steps, more than 83% of SRs will make more than the base. The University also agreed to peg fellows and trainees to the SR wage scale, so they would see the same raises as their colleagues who do the same work.
On NRST, the University has proposed guaranteeing the three-year post-candidacy waiver in the contract, which means the University cannot unilaterally take it away. This would make NRST a subject of bargaining for the first time, giving us a precedent to keep improving the amount of remission in the future. 
On Childcare, & Dependent Healthcare, the University also stated they would agree to add a year-over-year increase to the childcare subsidies each year, and to full-remission of dependent health care for the children of anyone who does not qualify for MediCal for Children. These are also new concepts that we can improve on in future rounds of bargaining. Additionally, we would also keep all of the rights that we’ve won or defended up until this point–on workload, on paid leaves, on grievance and arbitration, on union access, on access needs, on anti-bullying, etc. The duration of the contract would still be 2.5 years, expiring May 2025.
At the end of our session, the University agreed to all of the above in principle. We still do not have these proposals in writing, and there are important details that still need to be ironed out. The bargaining teams are eager to discuss all of this with members.

December 12, 2022

Today the neutral mediator– Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg– shared the University’s latest positions on wages, dependent healthcare, and NRST with the 2865 and SRU bargaining teams. 

He shared that the University is considering proposals on:

  • Dependent Healthcare
  • NRST
  • Wages, with potential for movement in a few possible areas, including: a) increasing base wages for everybody; b) additional summer funding; c) codified higher pay for some campuses/departments; d) including fellows and trainees in wage increases

Previously, UC has refused to offer any improvements to NRST or dependent healthcare during contract negotiations, so this could mark potential progress. Please note that at this point nothing is certain and the bargaining teams are still waiting to receive concrete proposals.

The bargaining teams also discussed what a transparent mediation process will look like going forward. In addition to these email updates, campus level updates, and departmental reports, the bargaining teams will be hosting a webinar with Mayor Steinberg to discuss the mediation process. 

December 11, 2022

Mediation Update 
Today the SRU and 2865 bargaining teams held another pre-mediation meeting with Mayor Darrell Steinberg, our voluntary mediator. We discussed the process of mediation and worked to ensure that he has the materials and resources needed to be informed on our priority issues. 

Steinberg also met with UC, and gave us a report back regarding UC’s position on our key issues. He reported that UC is considering making counter-proposals on childcare, dependent healthcare, and NRST. 

He shared some of the University’s current position on wages, including their thoughts regarding re-issuing and expanding on their side letters at UCSF and UC Berkeley to include other campuses and departments where workers receive supplemental compensation, like “top-ups”. 

The bargaining teams also continued to push for transparency in the process, and Steinberg expressed general support for our request that members be kept up to date as mediation takes a more solidified form. Stay tuned for more details! 

December 10, 2022

Mediation Update
After the bargaining teams voted to engage the University in mediation yesterday, the Governor’s office reached out to both the Union and the University to suggest Darrell Steinberg serve as a mediator. Both parties agreed. Steinberg is a former UAW member and the current mayor of Sacramento. He served as the President Pro Tem of the California legislature when the GSR unionization bill was first passed in the California legislature and he recently served as mediator during NUHW’s ten-week strike against Kaiser.

It is no coincidence that after four weeks of a powerful strike and direct actions targeting key UC decision makers, the Governor has now recommended a relatively pro-labor mediator to help reach fair contracts. It remains incredibly important that we continue building the power of our strike to influence the course of mediation.

Steinberg met with the SRU and 2865 bargaining teams today to make introductions and to understand the issues where the parties are far apart. The teams walked through the University’s and our current proposals regarding:

  • Wages
  • Non-Resident Supplemental Tuition
  • Childcare and Dependent Healthcare Remission

The bargaining teams currently plan to meet with the mediator again tomorrow to hammer out details regarding next steps in a transparent mediation process and what mediation sessions will look like. Despite UC’s public claim to the contrary, the bargaining teams have not agreed to “confidential” mediation. Look out for more updates!

December 9, 2022

The UAW 5810 Postdoctoral Scholars Contract Ratification Vote has come to a close, and union members have voted to ratify the tentative agreement. The full vote count is below:

  • Yes – 2988 Votes (89.4%)
  • No – 356 Votes (10.6%)

In Solidarity,

Elections Committee
Daniel Karmelic, UC San Francisco
Eric Kent, UC Davis
Daniel Velez-Ramirez, UCLA

December 9, 2022

The UAW 5810 Academic Researchers Contract Ratification Vote has come to a close, and union members have voted to ratify the tentative agreement. The full vote count is below:

  • Yes – 1123 Votes (79.5%)
  • No – 289 Votes (20.5%)

In Solidarity,

Elections Committee
Daniel Karmelic, UC San Francisco
Eric Kent, UC Davis
Daniel Velez-Ramirez, UCLA

December 8, 2022

In this email:

  • Bargaining updates
  • Mediation update
  • Dec. 14 Rally at the Regents Meeting at UCLA
  • Anti-Retaliation Town Hall
  • On Disagreement & Debate
  • Picket duty suspension
  • Grade submission guidance

Bargaining update
Today, in response to UC’s final offer, GSRs and ASEs made new proposals to UC, the contents of which were described in an earlier email today. These proposals were informed by the results of the poll sent by the bargaining team on Sunday night – you can view the results of the poll here.

UC’s response and Mediation
UC’s negotiators called our proposal a “departure” from reaching resolution and said we are “setting the parties back.” They took off the table two side letters they had proposed over the weekend on UCSF and Berkeley top-ups. They did not indicate they would send us new counter proposals. They renewed their request for a mediator with the implication that their next step would otherwise be to file for impasse.

Mediation is where a third party representative acts as an intermediary between the union and the university, and helps the parties to reach resolution. The exact terms of mediation (how it would be done, who the mediator would be, etc.) would be decided between us and the university. Bargaining team members met tonight to discuss strategy and are planning to make a decision as soon as tomorrow morning to allow time to talk to our coworkers. The University requested a response by 8AM on Friday.

Continue to Escalate: Rally at the Regents Meeting, December 14th 
UC’s negotiators have failed to seriously address the cost of living crisis and academic workers’ demands. At the same time, the University has been retaliating against striking workers for fighting for fair contracts. It’s time for the real decision makers to step in. On Wednesday December 14th, the UC Regents are coming to UCLA for their quarterly meeting. Join academic workers across the state for a rally to demand that the UC Regents guarantee an equitable UC. RSVP here and join workers across the state in elevating our demands and keeping up our fight. Transportation will be arranged from the 5 Southern California campuses.

Anti-Retaliation Townhall 
Academic Workers across the state have been organizing against threats from their supervisors regarding academic degree progress. Union members are fighting back. Join a town hall to discuss victories in our battles against retaliation and share tools and resources.

Friday 12/9 3pm: Register here for a zoom link.

On Disagreement and Debate
As we continue to engage in our strikes, we thought it was important to recognize that tensions are running high. We believe discussion and debate are essential to a healthy union. As we engage with each other about disagreements in strategy, let’s all reaffirm our commitment to mutual respect and our condemnation of any harassing or bullying behavior — within our workplace and within our union. We also want to encourage union members to consider the implications of expressing ill-will toward coworkers and their opinions to the press and on social media rather than discussing them with coworkers in internal forums. The University sees this as weakness in our union and will take every opportunity to exploit it.

Picket duty suspended
The 2865 executive board and SRU bargaining teams have voted to suspend picket duties starting Dec. 12 through Jan. 9 in acknowledgement of the break and campus closures. Members on strike receiving strike pay will continue to be eligible.

Grade Submission
As the end of term approaches, some faculty are asking striking TAs to submit grades. Grading is a key ASE job duty, and ASEs on strike have no obligation to grade or submit grades. If ASEs are in possession of physical materials such as exams or papers, labor law advises an ASE should turn over the physical materials–ungraded–if asked, in order to maintain the legal protections of the strike. If an ASE is in possession of grades that were required to be submitted before the start of the strike, labor law advises an ASE should return those grades.

In solidarity,

Aya Konishi
Department of Sociology, UCLA
UAW 2865 Bargaining Team

December 7, 2022

For the last few days, the SR and ASE bargaining teams have been talking with members to plan the next steps regarding negotiations. In response to this poll, the SR and ASE bargaining teams are preparing potential counter proposals. Make sure to weigh in if you haven’t already. 

A plurality of SRs thus far indicated they would like to see the bargaining team make a counterproposal, and a plurality of ASEs thus far indicated that they would like to see the bargaining team reiterate its proposal. Both teams are looking for feedback regarding proposals on wages, Non-Resident Supplemental Tuition, and Childcare. Fill out this survey to share your thoughts on a counter-proposal. 

In other news, workers continued disruptive actions across the state Monday and Tuesday. In Oakland, workers took over a meeting of some of UC’s top decision makers for academic labor issues. In San Francisco, workers shut down a major intersection in front of campus. In Los Angeles, workers picketed the home and office of UC Regent Jay Sures. In Sacramento, 17 workers were arrested at a sit-in in the UCOP offices while thousands of workers rallied outside at the capitol. 

UC should be hearing our message loud and clear: we’re not done negotiating, and there will be no business as usual while we are fighting for a fair contract.

In solidarity,

Jess Banks
Department of Statistics, UC Berkeley
SRU-UAW Bargaining Team

December 5, 2022

Late Friday night, UC gave ASEs and SRs what they called their “final” offer. This package proposal included many significant changes to compensation, and we have been working with organizing committees on our campuses to fully understand how those changes would affect each of us.

Look here for resources regarding the compensation proposals including:

For a general summary of how this proposal would affect ASE wages, click here.
For a general summary of how this proposal would affect SR wages, click here.
For all job titles at UCLA (which has a separate experience scale), click here.
For all job titles at UC Berkeley (which has a separate payroll schedule), click here.
UC is trying to end negotiations, but we’re not done yet. Our strike has forced UC to stop ignoring the value of our labor and begin making serious proposals at the bargaining tables. But passing us an offer that includes a requirement that we call off the strike immediately — before members have a chance to fully deliberate on the proposal — is not going to cut it.

Members of our union need time to discuss the proposal and questions of strategy regarding our strike. While this will happen primarily in organizing committees, department and campus town halls, etc, it would also help us to have input via this form.

We are going to continue escalating this week. Despite the UC’s declaration that this proposal would be their last, we believe there is still a window of opportunity to make further gains. In order to compel UC to make further progress in addressing the economic precarity that many of us face, workers are taking direct action around the state. Northern California workers are bringing the fight to the statehouse for a rally and march with legislative allies. Follow here to track tomorrow’s direct actions on social media.

Links in this email can also be found at Reach out if you have questions about how this proposal would affect you or want to discuss it with your bargaining team members.

In solidarity,

Ahmed Akhtar
Physics Department, UC San Diego
SRU-UAW Bargaining Team

On behalf of:
Academic Student Employee Bargaining Team
Student Researchers United Bargaining Team

December 4, 2022

Following the Tentative Agreement that was reached on 11/28 between the Postdoc Bargaining Team and UC, the UAW 5810 Executive Board set the dates for the ratification vote for Dec 5-9. You can view the full tentative agreement here

The contract ratification vote is for the members of the union to democratically determine whether or not to accept the terms of the tentative agreement. A simple majority of those voting determines the outcome of the vote. The voting will be conducted via the secure online voting platform SimplyVoting.

Voting will open on Monday morning (12/5) at 7:00AM and will conclude Friday (12/9) at 5:00PM. All Postdoc members will receive a ballot from UC-UAW ( on Monday morning. Reminders from SimplyVoting will be sent out on Tuesday-Friday morning to all members who haven’t yet voted. 

If you encounter an issue while voting, e.g. you did not get an invitation to your ballot or you have trouble logging into the ballot, please contact by 12 noon on December 9. Please make sure to check your Promotions or Spam folder if you have trouble locating your ballot invitation.
In solidarity, 
Elections Committee
Daniel Karmelic, UC San Francisco
Eric Kent, UC Davis
Daniel Velez-Ramirez, UCLA

December 3, 2022

We would like to update you on the comprehensive package proposals UC made to Academic Student Employees and Student Researchers last night. These proposals come in the wake of Friday morning’s actions, including UC Board of Regents President Richard Leib waking up to the sound of dozens of workers protesting outside his Solana Beach home. This was just one of many escalatory actions that took place across the state, including a wakeup call at the home of UC Berkeley Chancellor Carol Christ, a sit-in at Genentech Hall at UCSF, and occupations of the UC Davis Administration Building and of the much-despised UCPath headquarters in Riverside.

The package proposal includes:

Fee Remission – full remission of all campus fees, meaning student workers could see increases up to $1,617 in take-home pay per year depending on their campus
A $1 million/year summer summer funding program that would give grants of $1,000 to workers otherwise unable to find summer GSRships or TAships.
Childcare – $4,050 annual childcare reimbursement, which is an increase of $750 per year
ASE scale wage increases:
April 1, 2023: 7.5% increase
October 2023: 12.6% increase
October 2024: ~3.5% increase
TAs will receive step increases of 3% with years of experience.
For example, for a TA in their first year right now, their salary would increase by 33% by 2024
ASE wages on the proposed step system can be estimated by using this table.
SR scale wage increases:
April 1, 2023: 7.5% increase
October, 2023: ~6.1% increase
October 2024: 3.5% increase
Experience-based step increases for each year worked as a GSR at each of the three lowest steps.
For example, a first-year GSR currently at Step 4 today will see a 37% increase (a $877.37/month increase) by 2024.
The lowest paid GSR today will see a 77% increase (or $1,411/month increase) by 2024.
GSR wages on the proposed step system can be estimated using this calculator.
Both ASEs and GSRs would receive new experience-based steps, and raises that apply to all of their compensation (including student support/top-ups)
2.5 year duration: this means that, if ratified, the contract would be in effect for 2.5 years, meaning we would bargain again in approximately 2 years.
UC negotiators stated this is their final offer. The ASE and SR bargaining teams are discussing next steps and consulting with their campuses and organizing departmental meetings to discuss the proposal.

Please see the Bargaining webpage for a summary of all of the articles tentatively-agreed to in the bargaining process up until now.
In solidarity,

UAW 2865 Academic Student Employee Bargaining Team
UAW 5810 Academic Researcher Bargaining Team
UAW 5810 Postdoc Bargaining Team
SRU-UAW Student Researcher Bargaining Team

November 30, 2022

Updated December 1, 2022

Since beginning our historic strike 16 days ago, ASEs and SRs have made significant progress at the table on many issues. Last night, UC agreed to 8 weeks of fully-paid parental leave – equal for child-bearing and non-child-bearing parents – and has expanded paid leave for workers’ own serious health conditions from five to eight weeks. Tonight, the ASE and SR bargaining teams passed a new wages proposal to UC in a package. 

Here are the highlights:

  • Raise Student Researchers’ base wage by 95%, lifting it from $1,833 to $3,585 per month ($43,020 annually)
  • Raise ASEs’ base wage by 39%, lifting it from $2,583 to $3,585 per month ($43,020 annually)
  • An additional increase of 9% in April 2023 and 9% in Oct 2023 on all earnings for anyone paid above the minimum. This would mean no exclusion of “top ups” from our contract!
  • Annual 6% increases on all wages in subsequent years
  • Higher salaries via experience-based steps (7.75% increases for every four semesters / six quarters worked as an ASE or GSR)

      For those of us paid at the bottom of the scale, we’d see a $20,000 increase in the first year. The proposal addresses more than just the base wage by including yearly raises, raises on “top-ups,” and higher salaries via experience-based steps. This proposal would bring an ASE/SR making the base salary at the start of the contract to a $52,000 annual wage in 3 years. 

      UC’s proposal applies only to our base wage as workers. Our proposal applies to all compensation workers receive from UC, including what UC currently considers ‘student support.’ This proposal would mean a major transformation of the employment relationship at UC in which we are winning control over all of our earnings so that they are protected in our contracts and increase over time.

      Also tonight, ASEs joined Postdocs, Academic Researchers, and Student Researchers in tentatively agreeing to an Access Needs article that expands upon the protections in the current ASE contract. You can read about this article here.

      November 29, 2022

      The University made proposals on Appointment Notification and Summer Session for ASEs today, and the bargaining team reached a tentative agreement on these two articles, improving on ASEs’ rights to appointment notifications and job security during Summer Session. 

      GSRs and ASEs achieved a major victory on leaves: after years of fighting to expand paid parental leave, the University has finally agreed to provide 8 weeks of paid parental leave – equal for child-bearing and non-child-bearing parents – and has expanded leave for workers’ own serious health conditions from five to eight weeks. 

      In other economic areas, the University did not move far enough. The bargaining teams will be preparing responses. Expect more bargaining updates tomorrow.

      Postdoc and AR Tentative Agreement Town Halls and Ratification Vote schedule
      The UAW 5810 Executive Board has voted to hold the ratification votes on the Postdoc and Academic Researcher Tentative Agreements from Monday, December 5 through Friday December 9. The tentative agreements can be viewed on the Postdoc and AR Bargaining Proposal trackers here: AR Tentative Agreement and Postdoc Tentative Agreement.

      The AR and Postdoc Bargaining Teams are holding town hall meetings to discuss the Tentative Agreements on Thursday and Monday. 

      AR Tentative Agreement Town Halls:
      Thursday, December 1 at 10am – Click to RSVP
      Monday, December 5 at 4pm – Click to RSVP

      Postdoc Tentative Agreement Town Halls:
      Thursday, December 1 at Noon – Click to RSVP
      Monday, December 5 at 6pm – Click to RSVP

      November 28, 2022

      Tonight the University proposed a comprehensive proposal to Postdocs that the bargaining team has tentatively agreed to. You can read the full tentative agreement here. Highlights include: 

      • Compensation that addresses cost of living
        • Most Postdocs will receive a 20-23% salary increase (up to $12,000) by October 2023; over the course of 5 years as a Postdoc at UC, the current lowest paid Postdoc would see a 57% salary increase;
        • For 2024-2027: 7.2% annual increase for Postdocs on the scale (3.5% scale increase and 3.7% experience step), 3% annual increase for above-scale Postdocs
        • Faster timeline to first experience-based step
      • Increase from 4 weeks to 8 weeks of Parental and Family Leave paid at 100% for all Postdocs
      • Childcare subsidies that will start at $2,500/annually and increase to $2,800 annually – the first time Postdocs have won a childcare subsidy after 12 years of fighting
      • Lengthened initial appointments from 1 year to 2 years to ensure job security and longer visas
      • New Respectful Work Environment Article including industry-setting protections against abusive conduct and bullying that are fully grievable and arbitable
      • New Immigration Article with guaranteed leave time for immigration appointments and protections if immigration laws change
      • Protections for workers with disabilities that go beyond the ADA, guaranteeing interim accommodations while the interactive process is ongoing
      • Commitment to implement free transit passes within 3 years, and a commitment to bargain if free passes have not been implemented in that timeframe
      • E-bike discount of at least 15%

      Academic Researchers
      Tonight the University also made a comprehensive proposal to Academic Researchers that the bargaining team has tentatively agreed to. You can read the full tentative agreement here. Highlights include: 

      • Compensation that addresses cost of living
        • A typical Academic Researcher will receive 29% in salary increases (between scale and merit increases) over the life of the contract
        • An Assistant Project Scientist hired in July 2022 would see their compensation increase by $3,078 by July 2023, by an additional $6,395 by July 2024, and by $19,423 by the end of the contract.
        • A Junior Specialist hired in July 2022 would see their compensation increase by $5,459 by July 2023; if they continued as an Assistant Specialist their salary would increase by an additional $6,668 by July 2024, and by a total of $20,620 over the life of the contract.
      • 8 Weeks of Parental and Family Leave paid at 100%, up from 70% pay
      • Better job security: Longer appointments before merit review, and fewer exceptions to 1-year minimum appointments
      • All ARs are now eligible to apply for PI status and UC commits to meet with the Union to discuss the expansion of Bridge Funding Programs at each campus
      • New Respectful Work Environment Article including industry-setting protections against abusive conduct and bullying that are fully grievable and arbitable
      • Protections for workers with disabilities that go beyond the ADA, guaranteeing interim accommodations while the interactive process is ongoing
      • Commitment to implement free transit passes within 3 years, and a commitment to bargain if free passes have not been implemented in that timeframe
      • E-bike discounts of at least 15%
      • An improved Union Security article to keep our union strong, and a better Grievance and Arbitration process to enforce the contract

      ARs and Postdocs are still striking. The strikes called over Unfair Labor Practices and in sympathy with Student Researchers and Academic Student Employees will continue while the ratification process proceeds. Members will vote on ratification of the contract in the coming days. Postdoc and AR members will vote on ratification of each respective contract in the coming days. Dates for the ratification votes, as well as town halls to answer questions, will be announced soon.

      November 23, 2022

      After a powerful week and a half of our historic strike, UC has finally made a serious offer to Postdocs that addresses major concerns. Some highlights from UC’s package proposal tonight are:

      • Salary: Minimum salary scale increase of 16% by October 2023 (8% in April 2023, 7.5% in October 2023) Between experience-based steps and scale increases, the current lowest paid Postdocs would see a 23% salary increase (more than $12,000 by October 2023). Over the course of 5 years as a Postdoc at UC, the current lowest paid Postdoc would see a 55% salary increase.
      • Parental and Family Leave: expanding 100% paid family and parental leave to 8 weeks (up from the current 4 weeks) for ALL Postdocs, including first-year Postdocs,
      • Public Transit: a monthly pre-tax transportation benefit, e-bike discounts, and a commitment to phase in free transit passes over time,
      • Appointment length: after months of claiming it was not possible, UC agreed to implement two-year appointment lengths for incoming Postdocs.

      However, appointment security is a critical component of Postdoc jobs, and UC’s proposal isn’t yet what it needs to be::

      • Salary – UC’s proposal is serious, and the increases reflect cost of living. However, postdocs are still fighting for salary scales that start higher,
      • Appointment length – despite UC’s concession that two-year appointments are in fact possible, their current proposal contains too many carve outs for dismissal within the first year. Postdocs deserve better than this.

      For wages, their latest proposal reflects our core cross-unit bargaining demands to address the cost of living:

      • A big increase to the base wage that addresses the cost of living in California,
      • Experience-based step increases so pay increases with additional years of work experience,
      • Annual increases in the subsequent years of the contract, on all of the money the University pays us.

      November 22, 2022

      Today all units — Academic Student Employees, Graduate Student Researchers, Academic Researchers, and Postdocs — passed new proposals on Parking and Transit. We all made clear that, in addition to already-secured e-bike discounts and pre-tax transit benefits, we want real commitments from the University to fund free public transportation passes. Postdocs also reached agreement on a new Article covering LBL Postdocs that protects rights to Personal Time Off after UC had tried to roll this back. We’ll be back at the bargaining table tomorrow. 

      November 21, 2022

      Academic Student Employees responded to the university’s inadequate wages proposal today with our own proposals on wages, housing, and appointments. For wages, the bargaining team moved negotiations forward by shifting from an open-ended cost of living proposal to a definite one. The wages proposal now includes four main concepts: 

      1. 7% annual cost of living adjustments 
      2. 54K minimum base pay
      3. Experience-based step increases so pay increases with each additional year of work experience
      4. Wage increases on all compensation (including top-ups, fellowships, “student support”, bonuses, etc.)

      Read the full proposal here. Because we passed a new proposal, it is now the university’s turn to respond. 

      For Postdocs and Student Researchers, the university proposed improved Parking and Transit articles that include new pre-tax transit benefits, e-bike discounts and a transition to free public transit passes for all Academic Workers. The bargaining teams are discussing next steps on these important proposals that will help mitigate climate change.

      November 20, 2022

      Student Researchers
      Student Researchers made significant progress at the table over the weekend, including reaching Tentative Agreements on Appointment Notification and Immigration. The Appointment Notification article will ensure that the standard appointment for Student Researchers will be 12 months in length including summer. The article also helps protect against the University appointing GSRs at reduced appointment percentages to circumvent wage increases and other contractual benefits. On Immigration, Student Researchers now have clear and strong protections when work authorization is threatened by legal changes to immigration laws. 

      Additionally, today, UC requested an off-the-record conversation to ask questions about the concepts that we proposed this past week as part of our wage proposal. This was a productive conversation in which we reiterated our positions, and we hope that this results in UC responding with an actual proposal very soon. The key concepts in our wage proposal are: 

      • A 54k base wage for graduate workers
      • An experience-based equitable step scale
        • High base step for all SRs with raises between steps tied to cost of living
        • Like other academic jobs, SRs should be paid more with more experience
      • Raises on all our pay to ensure a cost of living adjustment
        • We should receive raises on all compensation – including “student support” money of bonuses/top-offs/fellowships
        • This would eliminate loopholes for UC to underpay SRs and stop many SRs from receiving wage increases
      • Annual raises that reflect rent increases
        • All SRs should receive annual % increases that address rent increases across the state.

      Academic Researchers
      Academic Researchers made significant progress this weekend: tentative agreements were reached on 5 articles that ensure that all Academic Researchers are eligible for PI status, improve job security for Academic Researchers up to the first merit review, and that facilitate progression from Junior to Assistant Specialist.

      The University made a conceptual proposal on appointments that indicated they are open to longer appointments, which has been a major goal of Postdocs for a long time. We discussed this extensively as a bargaining team and made a conceptual proposal in response.

      Academic Student Employees 
      The bargaining team prepared proposals to pass to the University tomorrow regarding appointment notification and wages. Stay tuned for more updates!

      November 18, 2022

      After a strong week on the picket lines, all four bargaining teams reached Tentative Agreements today: Classifications, Recognition, and Workload Protections for Academic Student Employees; a new Immigration article for Postdocs; Work Incurred Injury and Illness for Student Researchers; and four Title Series Articles and Layoff for Academic Researchers. 

      Following the rallies today, the tone in the room was decidedly different. For the first time, UC moved towards us on several key issues (like the immigration article for Postdocs and longer appointment length for ARs) and showed some urgency to get things done. Though they previously declined to schedule bargaining sessions for the weekend, after seeing our picket lines today they scheduled bargaining for Saturday.

      November 17, 2022

      Academic Student Employees, Student Researchers, and Academic Researchers all went to the bargaining tables today. 

      For Academic Student Employees, after months of demanding a real solution to the misclassification of hundreds of workers, the University agreed to a Classifications article that rectifies all misclassifications. Additionally, the University agreed to change the Recognition article to allow all job titles to be used on every campus. Finally, after many months of the University attempting to roll back the hard-fought workload protections that ASEs have won over two decades, the University finally agreed to maintain ASEs’ current strong rights to file and win grievances for overwork. 

      For Student Researchers, the University made proposals regarding Personal Time Off and Work Incurred Injury and Illness. For each, the University made steps towards us: they agreed to equal PTO for all Student Researchers; on Work Incurred Injury and Illness, they agreed to meet with the union to ensure that workers can receive full pay when they are out of work due to injury. The GSR bargaining team also responded to the University’s wages proposal with important components: 1) Maintained 54K base pay for GSRs; 2) Experience Based Steps with 7.5% increases between steps; 3) Wage increases on all earnings/compensation; and 4) annual wage increases that match increases in the rental market.

      Finally, for Academic Researchers, the University proposed a series of economic articles last night. They guaranteed access to a 15% discount for the purchase of e-bikes and increased their initial compensation proposal to 4.5% in the first year followed by 3% in the following years. The Bargaining Team countered with a package of proposals to communicate Academic Researchers’ priorities regarding Compensation, and Leaves, and Job Security.

      November 16, 2022

      UC bargained today with Student Researchers and came to the table with proposals on Parking and Transit, Appointment Notification, and Paid Time Off. In a major step forward the University proposed guaranteeing a discount for the purchase of e-bikes, advanced notifications for appointments, and expanded the group of Student Researchers who are eligible to receive paid time off. However, their inadequate transit proposal offered only a $30 pre-tax matching program, nowhere near enough to cover our commuting costs.

      The University also proposed an insultingly weak economic package, with monthly raises as low as $132. See the chart below for the full breakdown of their offer.

      November 15, 2022

      For the first time, the University proposed improved alternative transportation benefits in the Parking and Transit article. They also stated that they intend for these benefits to be similar for all Academic Student Employees, Academic Researchers, Postdocs, and Student Researchers. Their proposal contained several of workers’ core concepts: (partial) reimbursement of transit costs, a transition to free transit passes, and discounts for e-bikes. Academic Workers countered that we want a better benefit: the University must provide fully subsidized public transit and more support for bike commuters. Tomorrow, bargaining resumes in-person at UC Irvine.

      November 14, 2022

      Somehow, UC’s bargaining team could only find two hours to meet today, and declined to schedule bargaining for tomorrow. Bargaining will resume on Wednesday. Academic Worker Bargaining Teams are present and ready to bargain around the clock, but UC continues to drag its feet.

      The two hours during which UC and UAW bargained today were productive: Student Researchers reached tentative agreements on Union Access and Rights, and Union Security, ensuring that Student Researchers in their very first contract have strong rights to orientations and to join their union. We remain hopeful more progress will be made when bargaining resumes.

      The University has also reiterated their proposal for mediation. But at this time, we feel strongly that the only way to reach fair agreements is for UC to simply stop its unlawful behavior, come to the bargaining tables in good faith, and make reasonable proposals. It is not surprising that UC is moving slowly as their negotiators assess the strength of our strike. As we saw today, the strike is powerful. Tomorrow, Academic Workers will return to the picket line and will continue to shut down UC until it ceases its unfair labor practices!

      For a summary of the current state of bargaining, please see this chart which lays out our and UC’s outstanding bargaining proposals.

      November 13, 2022

      Bargaining Updates
      As a result of the pressure Academic Workers have placed on UC, UAW Bargaining Team members have made increasing progress on important provisions in the past few days – reaching agreements on Grievance and Arbitration for all four bargaining units. By reaching an agreement on this key article, 48,000 Academic Workers can now enforce every single provision of their contracts. Still, averting a strike would take a level of commitment and respect for the bargaining process that UC simply has yet to display. Bargaining is still going on and will likely continue until late tonight.

      Also: hear directly from your bargaining team members in new bargaining update videos on our website!

      Upcoming Bargaining Dates 
      The bargaining teams are meeting into the night and are on call for formal bargaining sessions to be called. Otherwise, the next sessions are scheduled for:

      • Academic Researchers – Friday, 11/18 – RSVP here
      • Academic Student Employees Tuesday, 11/15  – RSVP here
      • Postdocs – Wednesday, 11/16 – RSVP here
      • Student Researchers Thursday, 11/17  – RSVP here

      November 12, 2022

      Though we made progress in yesterday’s sessions, the University’s intransigence and obstructive behavior continue to imperil our chances of reaching resolution. 

      Upcoming Bargaining Dates 
      The bargaining teams are meeting all weekend and are on call for formal bargaining sessions to be scheduled. Otherwise, the next sessions are scheduled for:

      • Academic Researchers – Friday, 11/18 – RSVP here
      • Academic Student Employees Tuesday, 11/15  – RSVP here
      • Postdocs – Wednesday, 11/16 – RSVP here
      • Student Researchers Thursday, 11/17  – RSVP here

      Academic Researchers
      On Friday, the Academic Researcher bargaining team met and prepared a new set of proposals that are ready to pass, but UC told us they were not available to meet. We remain ready and willing to meet with UC whenever necessary to move forward toward agreement.

      Academic Student Employees
      On Friday, ASEs were ready to discuss workload and outstanding issues related to undergraduate workers in Berkeley EECS and San Diego Biology. The university focused the day on preparations for Postdoc and SR bargaining, so we hope to continue those discussions today.

      The University passed proposals on Childcare and Appointments at Postdoc bargaining today with slight changes, but also re-passed a Leaves proposal with unequal benefits for first-year Postdocs. Postdocs made a Benefits “Supposal”: in order to agree to a new rate structure in 2024, UC would have to improve Postdoc benefits by adding infertility coverage, acupuncture and improved vision benefits. We think we’re close to reaching agreement on Benefits and we’re waiting on UC’s response.

      Student Researchers
      At a late-night session last night, the Student Researchers United Bargaining team reached three key tentative agreements with the University: Appointment Security, a withdrawal of the University’s layoffs proposal, and an agreement on Defined Contribution Plans. These agreements mark major progress in negotiations and are a testament to the power we’re building.

      November 11, 2022

      The UAW Bargaining Teams continue to meet with UC around the clock to push them to make meaningful progress. Yesterday, each bargaining team chose one representative to meet with UC in the first-ever coordinated session. Unfortunately, UC’s comments during bargaining, as well as their public comments about the impending strike, do not give cause for optimism.

      In ASE bargaining, UC’s negotiators said that cost of living was not an important factor to UC when setting wages. In memos to other UC employees, UC referred to our wage demands as ‘unreasonable’ and ‘exorbitant’ – despite the fact that our compensation proposals for all units amount to less than 3% of the UC budget.

      Upcoming Bargaining Dates (note: additional dates may be added):

      • Academic Researchers – Friday, 11/18 – RSVP here
      • Academic Student Employees Tuesday, 11/15  – RSVP here
      • Postdocs – Wednesday, 11/16 – RSVP here
      • Student Researchers Thursday, 11/17  – RSVP here

      Academic Researchers
      The University and the Union met in a last-minute session yesterday to make progress on Grievance and Arbitration and Compensation. Unfortunately, the University did not agree to our dispute resolution process. We are much closer now, and are hopeful that further progress will be made at future sessions. 

      Academic Student Employees
      This week, the University finally ceded to ASEs’ demand that it institute a unified system-wide step system based on experience. This proposal marks major progress in ASEs’ fight for fair compensation. Nonetheless, the base pay falls far below our bargaining demands. ASEs were also able to agree to a grievance and arbitration article this week, and got closer to agreement on workload and improved rights for undergraduate workers in Berkeley EECS and San Diego Biology.

      Postdocs discussed benefits, leaves, and childcare with the University this week. While we’re close to reaching an agreement on benefits that improves benefits coverage for Postdocs, the University is still insisting that first-year Postdocs have access to fewer weeks of leave than other Academic Workers. 

      Student Researchers
      This week Student Researchers met with the University and made proposals on Appointment Security and Parking and Transit. Job security and improved public transit are major priorities for Student Researchers. Further, for the first time since bargaining began, the University said that they will end their attempts to roll back the hard-fought union recognition rights that GSRs won just last year. 

      Moreover, the University has failed to directly remedy or offer solutions to remedy its unfair labor practices that are impeding bargaining. The strike is a reaction to this unlawful behavior blocking us from getting fair contracts.

      November 7, 2022

      Bargaining Updates
      The Bargaining Teams continue to meet with UC in order to make meaningful progress. Our mass collective action over the past few weeks has resulted in progress in some important areas at the bargaining table, but major issues remain unresolved including fair pay, green transit, support for parents and families, and support for international scholars. The AR, Postdoc and ASE teams have all decided against further contract extensions. This means the No Strikes articles are expired but the vast majority of contract terms remain in place in accordance with the status quo provisions under California law.

      Upcoming Bargaining Dates (note: additional dates may be added)
      Upcoming bargaining dates for each unit are:

      • Academic Researchers – Friday 11/18 – RSVP here
      • Academic Student Employees – Wednesday 11/9 & Thursday 11/10 – RSVP here
      • Postdocs – Wednesday 11/15 – RSVP here
      • Student Researchers – Monday 11/7 & Thursday 11/10 – RSVP here

      Academic Researchers
      The past week brought big progress at the Academic Researcher bargaining table: ARs reached agreement on an important package covering Access Needs, including adding temporary accommodations, language in appointment letters that proactively lets new ARs know how to request accommodations, and a joint committee to continue to work on issues like central funding for access needs and reviewing data to monitor problem areas. ARs also signed off on a provision in our Union Security article that will ensure that all new ARs will receive info about their union and have the opportunity to sign up as a member right after starting their position. UC gave us a “supposal” on Transit Benefits, which was a move towards our demand to provide better options for sustainable commutes and cutting UC’s carbon footprint, but their supposal was lacking any specificity. In response, ARs then passed a new Parking and Transit proposal with several modifications including an updated section on bike and e-bike benefits.

      Academic Student Employees
      Next week we’ll be bargaining over workload, grievance and arbitration, and more. You can RSVP to a session here

      Postdocs had two sessions this week on Tuesday and Thursday. On Tuesday, UC passed a package proposal with a (very) slight improvement in compensation (proposing to increase Postdoc pay by a further $12/week), and updated proposals on paid family leaves and childcare benefits. But UC’s leaves and childcare proposals still offer lesser benefits to Postdocs in their first year, while our proposal is equal benefits for all. On Thursday we passed an updated Parking and Transit proposal with a more complete description of bike benefits including up to $360 in annual reimbursement for bike costs and $500 rebates toward the purchase of e-bikes.

      Student Researchers
      After months of demanding more job security for student researchers, the University made its first proposal on “Appointment Security” last week, an article that would ensure that once a Student Researcher has offered and accepted a position, they are entitled to a job or equivalent pay. Student Researchers and the University were also able to reach a Tentative Agreement on Access Needs and Reasonable Accommodations – marking major progress in ensuring that Student Researchers are guaranteed an accessible workplace.