The Coalition of Graduate Employees conducted their fourth and final bargaining session with OSU on December 3, to a full venue at Westminster House.
The first of the two proposals, Article 6, presented concerned was a changing of language in regards to the actions which OSU may take in the case that their employees go on strike. Specifically, it stated OSU would not be allowed to force the unclaimed workload resulting from a strike on to other faculty or staff. This was proposed in order to keep strikes from being undermined.
The second proposal, Article 29, stated that OSU should increase the amount and accessibility of gender-neutral restrooms and locker rooms across campus. Specifically, the proposal stated that all buildings should include at least one gender-neutral restroom facility per floor, in a location easily accessible and suitably private.
After a brief caucus, OSU’s bargaining team presented their counter proposals:
First, a change to the language of Article 3, which concerns the terms of agreement that graduate employees sign upon beginning work at OSU. The counter proposal would increase the length of a graduate employee’s contract from four years to five years.
Second, a counter proposal to Article 18, which concerns employee grievances. The proposal stated that graduate employees would have a period of 30 days to file grievances after the date of occurrence, along with a 30-day response time for OSU. Additionally, the bargaining team proposed that the first individual contacted for grievances be the employee’s supervisor instead of the chair, director, or dean. Finally, the counter proposal struck language that would allow graduate employees to file grievances concerning threats to their academic standing.
Both counter proposals were decried as regressive by the CGE. With the final bargaining session coming to what seems to be an unsatisfactory close, future interactions between the CGE and OSU remain to be seen.
More information on CGE events, including detailed notes on past bargaining sessions, can be found at www.cge6069.org
By Thomas Nguyen