HPAE local 5094 met on 9/8/22 for our eleventh session of negotiations with Rutgers University. Our contract expired July 1, 2022.
Following the 8/24/22 bargaining session where Rutgers Administration stormed out of the session, we met again on 9/8/22 and finally received some of the information we requested 6 months ago, and an initial counter on our wage proposal.
In a wonderful show of solidarity, 65 union members attended this session as committee alternates.. In response, University Administration left the Zoom session and refused to come back to answer our questions about the wage proposal. The Administration’s conduct begs the question – what is Rutgers afraid of?
Rutgers works because we do! Our negotiations team is powering through the resistance of the University to member inclusion and transparency, and our membership has shown Rutgers Administration that this is our union, our contract, and we are paying attention . The University continues to cower at our numbers in negotiations, but from the start we have included members so that they can see what University Administration passes off as reasonable proposals.
The current initial wage counter from the University is as follows:
January 1, 2023: 0.5% and a step for those who have one year of service on the current grade and step. Those on the top step would receive $1500 lump sum not included in the base salary.
January 1, 2024, January 1, 2025, and January 1, 2026 – Step for those who have one year of service on the current grade and step. Those on the top step would receive $1200 lump sum not included in the base salary.
The University’s current proposal would eliminate ANY increase for those negotiations’ unit employees with less than one year of employment in a HPAE position in years two, three and four of the contract.
Negotiations unit employees transferred or promoted from one HPAE Local 5094 position to another or out of the bargaining unit during the four years of the contract would not be eligible for the step movement under the current Rutgers proposal. We attempted to get clarity on the University’s intent on this language, but the University left the bargaining session before answering the questions we had.
Now that we have an initial counter on wages from the University, we can make moves on our proposals. This University is showing our members how much they appreciate the hard work our bargaining unit does. While the initial wage proposal is higher than what we typically see from the University as an opening offer, it is still very far apart from our initial wage proposal of 6.5% and a step movement each year for a four-year contract. The hard work begins now.
Our team will be working in between sessions to review all outstanding proposals on the table to format a comprehensive counter proposal to all economic and non-economic proposals remaining on the table. We continue to need your support at the table and motivating our general membership. If you are not currently active in your department as a representative or member of the Contract Action Team, please sign up by contacting Suzanne Collado at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you have not yet supported your bargaining team by signing the petition, click the link below to sign and show solidarity with your negotiations team.
Our next virtual session is scheduled for Thursday, September 22 at 10:00am. You will receive the Zoom link for the negotiation session with Rutgers at the caucus. Register for our caucus room here:
You should not be on work time during your attendance at the session. We are asking for a commitment of up to 1 hour (whatever your lunch/break times are) to show Rutgers we stand with our committee in solidarity. You can use either your personal or Rutgers device to log into the sessions.
HPAE 5094 Negotiations Committee – Justin O’Hea, Ryan Novosielski, Ana Delgado, Philip Wilson, Fatima Meadows, Jennifer Hunt, Kerry Butch, Christina Rozario, Dana LaClair, Charles Jackson, Saleena Ghanny, Susan Fenker, Robin Covington, Isabel Arroyo, and Mayra Barreto