Update on Graduate Student Unionization
To: Graduate Students, Faculty, and Academic Appointees
From: Michele Rasmussen, Dean of Students in the University
Subject: Update on Graduate Student Unionization
Date: July 3, 2017
I am writing to update you about the election petition filed by the American Federation of Teachers and American Association of University Professors, which seeks to form a union under the aegis of Graduate Students United (GSU) and that would be composed of approximately 2,200 graduate students in several academic divisions. In late May, at the conclusion of a 10-day evidentiary hearing, the National Labor Relations Board’s (NLRB) Chicago Regional Director gave GSU and the University 15 days to file briefs advancing their legal arguments and views of the factual record.
The parties filed their briefs on June 15, and they are available here (expired link removed) for your consideration. The NLRB Regional Director is currently considering the evidentiary record and the law. He will issue a decision at some point this summer, either directing an election or dismissing the election petition. If an election is directed, the Regional Director will specify the appropriate unit of covered graduate students, voter eligibility, and election dates and locations.
As we have throughout this process, we will continue to keep you updated on the status of the legal proceedings and ensure you have the information you will need to make an informed decision about the merits of unionization.