Tag: Columbia University

Congrats, Columbia University Graduate Workers!

“We are happy to announce that Columbia University has offered a historic pathway forward that “is intended to promote good-faith bargaining toward initial contracts” with Graduate Workers of Columbia-UAW and Columbia Postdoctoral Workers-UAW.   The proposed framework agreement that, if approved by the workers, would lead to bargaining for initial contracts starting in the winter. “We commend Columbia and believe we can negotiate a fair contract that improves the lives of workers while respecting Columbia’s right to manage its overall academic mission and enhance its reputation as a world leader in teaching and research.” -Beverley Brakeman, Director of UAW Region 9A

Columbia University Postdocs form union with UAW, petition NLRB for election; first private university postdoc effort expands growing academic union movement

NEW YORK CITY — A majority of the 2,000 postdoctoral researchers at Columbia University have formed a union and today filed a petition initiating the certification process with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). “After hundreds of conversations, meetings and town halls across the university over the last year, we are excited to take this important step toward establishing a union to improve the postdoc experience at Columbia,” said Alvaro Cuesta-Dominguez, a postdoc in Physiology and Cellular Biophysics.  “We hope to vote on unionization soon, so we can join thousands of our colleagues at public universities like the University of ... Read more

Columbia Grad Workers Are on Strike

Sixteen months after graduate workers won a federally-certified union election, Columbia’s refusal to bargain sends workers to the picket lines New York City – After an overwhelming 93% strike authorization vote earlier this month, and after offering the university the choice to avoid a strike by coming to the bargaining table, Columbia graduate workers are on strike. Instead of teaching, grading papers and performing research during the last week of classes, Teaching and Research Assistants across campus are walking picket lines. Picket times and locations are as listed, and press is welcome. Tuesday 4/24: 10am to 3pm (Low) Wednesday 4/25: ... Read more

Columbia Workers Set Strike Deadline of April 24

Columbia Workers Set Strike Deadline of April 24 If Columbia administrators do not agree to bargain by 10 am on April 24, graduate workers across the campus will immediately go on strike  New York City – After an overwhelming 93% strike authorization vote last week, Columbia grad workers have set a strike deadline. In a letter to President Lee Bollinger, workers demanded that the university declare its intention to begin bargaining by 10 am on April 24. If the university continues to defy both labor law and the democratic voice of its workers, and does not agree to bargain by that deadline, graduate workers will ... Read more

Huge Boost to Graduate Worker Movement as NLRB Certifies Columbia Union

For Immediate Release:  Monday, Dec. 18, 2017 Board rejects Columbia objections to December 2016 union vote and certifies GWC-UAW; workers call on administration to fulfill legal obligation to bargain with largest-ever graduate workers union at a private university WASHINGTON, DC—The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has upheld an overwhelming December 2016 vote in favor of unionization and certified Graduate Workers of Columbia-UAW (GWC-UAW) as the union for 3,000 research and teaching assistants who work at the Ivy League school.  GWC-UAW leaders immediately requested that the administration fulfil its legal obligation to start good-faith negotiations for a contract, which would cover ... Read more

Congressional Leaders to Hear Grad Worker Testimony on Columbia’s Refusal to Bargain

Nine months have passed since overwhelming 72% vote in favor of unionization New York City – On Wednesday, September 20th, Research and Teaching Assistants from departments across Columbia will testify in front of a panel that will include Members of Congress Jerry Nadler and Grace Meng, State Assembly member Deborah Glick, New York City Councilman Mark Levine, New York City Central Labor Council President Vincent Alvarez, and other community leaders on how the University’s refusal to bargain with their union has impacted their lives. The panel will also include graduate workers from other universities, including Yale, where administrators are similarly ... Read more

National Academies Face Growing Criticism for Appointing Columbia President to Chair Committee on Voting

Major pro-democracy activists join those questioning appointment while Bollinger refuses to respect results of overwhelming democratic unionization vote on his own campus New York City – A broad coalition of pro-Democracy activists sent a letter today to the National Academies’ Future of Voting committee expressing serious concerns over the appointment of Columbia President Lee Bollinger to serve as co-chair. The letter, which can be read in full here, points out that Bollinger has a record of undemocratic practices on his own campus, particularly his ongoing refusal to honor the results of an overwhelming 72 percent vote in favor of unionization by ... Read more

What we saw at the March for Science

Photo by Sarah Joseph On Saturday, Earth Day, tens of thousands of people participated in the March for Science at the National Mall in Washington, D.C., and numerous other cities across the U.S.  Among the participants in Washington were hundreds of UAW members who rallied behind the mission of the event and spent the day celebrating science. Photo by Catherine Braine The passionate crowd gathered to generate a conversation about the alarming trend toward discrediting facts and scientific consensus, and restricting scientific discovery. Sarah Joseph, a UAW Local 2110 member from the Department of Genetics at Columbia University, had a ... Read more

NLRB Upholds Columbia Graduate Workers’ Overwhelming Vote for Union

Columbia Graduate Workers Call on Administration to Respect Democratic Vote and Join Efforts to Strengthen University   NEW YORK – Columbia University research assistants and teaching assistants – whose landmark case restored union rights for graduate workers nationwide – are calling on university administrators to join them at the table and begin their important work to bargain a strong contract that prioritizes a fair, safe and respectful working environment. Today, the National Labor Relations Board’s Brooklyn office upheld graduate workers’ election in December to choose Graduate Workers of Columbia-United Auto Workers (GWC-UAW) as their union. In her ruling, Hearing Officer ... Read more

Columbia University TAs and RAs vote overwhelmingly to join Graduate Workers of Columbia-UAW

Graduate workers and supporters call on university administration to honor collective bargaining rights NEW YORK – Columbia University research assistants and teaching assistants – whose landmark case restored union rights for graduate workers nationwide – voted 1602 to 623 in favor of joining Graduate Workers of Columbia-United Auto Workers Union (GWC-UAW). With broad-scale support from members of Congress, New York elected officials, community leaders, faculty and students, graduate workers at Columbia are the first in the country to form their union in the wake of the National Labor Relations Board’s August ruling.   “Today, 3,500 RAs and TAs like me have ... Read more