Our contract has expired; sign our petition demanding a fair contract!
June 30th was the last day of our contract. The terms remain in effect, but management’s inability to meaningfully engage in negotiations means that the salary increases we are demanding have not taken effect. Despite sending a demand to bargain at the end of February, management has only met with us five times and made a single proposal: to strip you of your right to be notified of your right to union representation in situations that could lead to discipline.
What management has done so far is attempted to negotiate a contract extension with a paltry 2.5% salary increase, and not until this October – the same offer they attempted to make last fall to the Coalition of Rutgers Unions (our counter to which was ignored). They’ve also repeatedly told us that the contract works for them as is, and that the issues you told us were important only impact a “fraction” of our membership.
We kept this University operating during the ongoing pandemic, many of us at significant personal risk, and at times when the University failed to provide PPE or make changes that would have kept us safe. The University delayed our salary increases, laid off many of our members, and increased their “rainy day” fund by more than $100M. Apparently keeping our members employed and on health insurance during a public health crisis wasn’t worth spending this money. At the same time, management has made it clear to our negotiating team that they felt Rutgers’ work with unions during the pandemic was worthy of commendation. We felt and continue to feel differently.
We are Rutgers and We Deserve Better. We deserve a safe workplace, telework on terms that are mutually beneficial (and not dictated by a “Future of Work” committee that circumvents the bargaining process), tuition remission terms that work for everyone, fair wage increases, job security, promotional opportunities, and respect and dignity in our work – to name a few. Rutgers has made it clear that if we are going to get these things, we are going to need to fight for them. Unions across the country have demonstrated this past year: when we fight together, we win!
The first step in this fight is to sign the petition developed by our Contract Action Team. A strong showing on this petition shows both the committee on negotiations and Rutgers management that we intend to fight and are prepared to take the steps necessary to get what we deserve. Fair contracts are bargained at the negotiating table, but it’s what we do together away from the table that gets us to a win. Sign today!
Justin O’Hea, Co-President
Ryan Novosielski, Co-President