We will strike on November 1st if we don’t reach a fair agreement that meets our needs. Our members demand that the administration bargains in good faith now!
Here is why:
Over six months, we have been fighting for issues that the overwhelming majority of postdoc and ARSs workers agree are fair and essential, winning some demands thanks to the actions outside of the bargaining table that demonstrated our resolve:
|OUR WINS AND PROGRESS:||LITTLE MOVEMENT ON CORE DEMANDS:|
|Neutral third party arbitration for cases of bullying once the new power-based harassment policy is established.||Minimum salaries that keep up with historic inflation, and recognize experience.|
|Hardship fund to cover medical emergencies of postdocs/ARSs (still trying to increase the amount).||Yearly raises that keep up with inflation, including a yearly lump sum to make up for the high cost of living.|
|$1,250 to cover Visa renewals, increasing support for International researchers.||Increased support for postdocs/ARSs with children.|
|$1,500 relocation payment for new employees.||A housing stipend to offset the ballooning rent burden in NYC.|
|Limits on classification of fellows as independent contractors and $3,500 to compensate for loss of benefits||Columbia can afford these improvements if institutional money is used to supplement research budgets.|
READ MORE DETAILS HERE
If you have questions about a potential strike please check out these frequently asked questions and also feel free to reply to this email.
- Blocking salary raises after June 30 to pressure us into accepting an insufficient contract despite our union’s attempt to reach a mutually satisfactory solution.
- Failure to provide information justifying their opposition to our contract demands.
- For 20 sessions failed to engage in our contract proposals by denying us the right to discuss important topics for a majority of postdocs/ARSs like housing support or childcare.
- After 23 sessions Columbia only countered compensation four times and only increased their economic offer by less than $3,000/year with new proposed salaries that constitute a pay cut from our previous contract when adjusted for inflation.
- In August, an overwhelming 98% of members voted YES to authorize a strike.
- In light of all this, the Bargaining Committee filed an Unfair Labor Practice against the University.
- The Bargaining Committee is trying its best to avoid acting on this vote, even agreeing to having a federal mediator present in the last few sessions.
The truth is we can’t wait any longer: we want Columbia’s administration to engage with our bargaining proposals fairly. We will begin a strike on November 1st if the administration doesn’t work in good faith to reach a fair agreement that meets the needs of our members. We believe that giving the administration this deadline is necessary to ensure that they listen to the voices of CPW-UAW members.
This way we will protect the rights and well-being of our members and all postdoctoral researchers across the country.
Keep an eye out for further updates soon!
Our organizing committee is actively working on plans to make the strike as effective as possible – get involved to shape what a strike will look like for columbia postdocs & ARSs!
Check this FAQ and reach out if you have any additional questions or concerns.
We are setting up a hardship fund and garnering support from the wider community, local political leaders and media.
Reach out if you can help!
Your Friendly Neighborhood Bargaining & Organizing Committees.