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: June 5, 2017
Last Thursday afternoon, during the election petition hearing at the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) in Chicago, attorneys for the American Federation of Teachers/American Association of University Professors withdrew their request for a mail ballot election commencing May 31, and instead proposed an in-person election during Autumn Quarter. By revising its position, the union essentially has adopted the proposal made by the University in early May when the union filed the election petition; the University proposed this because many students may have been unable to participate in a summer election. This development occurred at the conclusion of the hearing, which was held over the course of 10 days and included the testimony of many witnesses called by the University and the union.
Now that the hearing has concluded, the University and unions will submit post-hearing briefs, after which the NLRB’s regional director will review both presentations and make a decision on whether or not to proceed with an election. If he decides to direct an election, the regional director will also determine the appropriate bargaining unit, voter eligibility, and election dates and locations.
As we await the regional director’s decision, I encourage you to review the hearing documents and transcripts on the Provost website. This will enable graduate students who are eligible to vote to make their own independent judgments about unionization based on all available information.