Rutgers Labor Management Committee Report, October 22, 2013

On October 22, 2013, the Union Coalition held our quarterly Labor Management Committee (LMC) meeting with Rutgers’ administration. Union representatives were present for HPAE, CWA, AAUP-AFT, AAUP(UMD), CIR, Teamsters, URA-AFT, AFSCME, FOP and IFPTE. Our combined membership represents over 18,000 Rutgers employees. We met with management from Labor Relations, Academic Affairs and Human Resources.

In previous LMC meetings, Rutgers Administration asked the Coalition for ideas to address potential issues that may arise when employees from two separate unions share similar functions and when union and non-union staff may work side-by-side. Professionals and nursing staff from the Legacy Rutgers units do not have a union and are subject to different terms and conditions of employment.

Last night we presented our response and flagged some issues for further discussions, including:

1.The University should give advance notice of any policy changes or new policies to the Coalition and if the need arises, bargain changes with the Coalition.

2. The University should give prior notice to the Coalition of new hires and new positions including their proposed bargaining unit designations. If a dispute exists, the impacted unions should meet with the University to resolve through an agreed upon dispute resolution procedure.

3. The Coalition should receive advanced notice of bargaining unit employees who may be laid off due to duplication of functions after July 1, 2014. The University should meet with the Coalition beforehand to discuss alternate solutions to avoid layoffs.

4. A similar process should be adopted for addressing any future reorganization plans.

5. The LMC should identify all positions and functions represented by the UMDNJ Legacy unions, but not by the pre-merger Rutgers unions and vice versa, and develop a procedure for adding those positions to appropriate union bargaining units.

6. Approaches to bargaining should be developed for units that represent employees performing similar functions.

Management was not prepared to respond to our proposals last night. A date for the next LMC meeting is forthcoming. Management proposed February 4. We will propose to meet earlier.

The Labor Management Committee (LMC) was established as part of the New Jersey Medical and Health Sciences Education Restructuring Act. The LMC is intended to review all proposed restructuring and reorganization plans and to make recommendations to the Board of Governors regarding personnel and labor relations issues related to the proposed plans, including recommendations to improve service delivery and avoid duplication of services and to promote equitable and consistent policies for compensation, benefits, and other terms and conditions of employment throughout the university for employees performing substantially similar duties.