Labor Relations

Negotiations Recap for April 30, 2012

This recap details the eighth session for renewal of the collective bargaining agreement between the UW and UAW.

UAW Response

UAW began by expressing its appreciation for UW’s leadership in proposing the Global Challenge States competitive wage initiative.

UAW pointed out that many ASEs on a variable rate wage schedule would not receive additional benefits from UW aligning ASE average wages with those of its Global Challenge States peer institutions, because their pay already exceeds this average.

UAW Counter-Proposal

UAW presented revisions to UW’s proposed changes to Article 32:
Article 32 – Wages: UAW proposed that the Global Challenge initiative align the average of the overall compensation package instead of the average wages.
UAW proposed that each year, for the duration of the contract, all ASE variable rates be increased by 4.8 percent, and that ASE hourly rates be increased by 9.8 percent.
UAW also proposed removing the mandatory Building Fee for all non-hourly ASEs.
UAW also further amended its proposals on childcare, health insurance, and “Academic Excellence”:
Article 5 – Childcare: UAW proposed that UW increase its yearly commitment to ASE childcare by $10,000 for the 2013 fiscal year, and $2,500 for each subsequent year during the contract.
Article 12 – Insurance Programs: UAW proposed that UW increase ASE dependent coverage by five percent per year during the contract. UAW also proposed that the UW assume coverage of all potential benefits of the impending Affordable Care Act this year.
“Academic Excellence”: UAW revised this clause to require that UW provide UAW with annual reports detailing classroom metrics, and that UW meet regularly with UAW to discuss the topics of online learning and class sizes.

UW Response

UW presented a revision of its former proposal to UAW.

Key Leadership Initiative

UW proposed a revised, more inclusive version of its Key Leadership Initiative to address UAW’s concerns.

This revised proposal maintained bringing the average base wage of ASEs at the UW into alignment with that of its peer institutions in the Global Challenge States by 2015, and still provided for annual raises up to that point, whereupon the wages would be fixed to this average.

The revised proposal provided additional benefits for ASEs working on variable rate or hourly wage scales.

Variable Rate
ASEs on variable rate wage schedules would receive a two percent annual increase, to account for any who will not incur a pay raise through the Global Challenge States standard because their rates already exceed that amount.
The base rate for ASEs on an hourly wage scale, $9.75 per hour, would increase by two percent each year.

UW declined UAW’s proposal to use overall compensation as a core metric, and instead upheld its proposal to use base salary.

UW revised responses to UAW proposals:
Article 5 – Childcare
UW agreed to increase its annual commitment to ASE childcare expenses by $10,000 for fiscal year 2013, and would increase this by $2,500 each subsequent year for the following two years.
Article 7 – Fee and Tuition Waivers
UW would remain committed to maintain the tuition waiver benefit for ASEs, absorbing any increase in tuition.
Article 12 – Insurance Programs
UW agreed to preserve the current GAIP plan for the coming year, absorbing the rising cost of premiums. UW would do so for the remainder of the contract, assuming a six percent annual inflation increase.
Academic Excellence
UW would formally recognize the importance of ASEs, but not commit to specific levels of funding for instructional services based on previous years.

Further Dialogue

UAW requested clarification on UW’s resistance to its amended “Academic Excellence” proposal.

UW pointed out that its proposed financial commitments to UAW wages and healthcare are a material demonstration of its continued investment in ASEs. UW noted that what is taught and how it is taught is too subjective to be bargained in a contract and on a broad scale.

UAW expressed concern over UW declining its proposal to include sexual reassignment coverage in the GAIP plan.

UW explained that while it is compassionate for this particular issue, it cannot currently provide any expansions to the GAIP plan, including this provision, due to the high cost of simply maintaining GAIP amidst rising premiums.

Today was the expiration date of the existing contract, but UW and UAW agreed to extend negotiations until 6 p.m. on May 1, 2012.

State law provides for the existing contract to remain in effect for up to one year following expiration, while both parties continue work to reach an agreement.