Labor Relations

Negotiations Recap for August 27, 2012

This recap details the fifth session for the renewal of the collective bargaining agreement between the UW and SEIU 925.

SEIU 925 Presentation

Airlift Northwest Presentation

An Airlift Northwest communications specialist delivered a presentation to promote wage parity between dispatchers at Airlift Northwest and those at the UW Police Department.

The presentation outlined the duties and responsibilities of Airlift Northwest dispatchers, emphasizing the complex coordination that is typically involved, and noting that most calls have an emergency component.

Key Points of SEIU 925’s Proposal
Provide across-the-board raises of 3 percent in 2013 and 4 percent in 2014, eliminate the Career Enhancement/Growth (CEGP) program, and convert CEGP merit-based steps into automatic step increases.
SEIU 925 also proposed increasing and standardizing the rates of all pay premiums and shift differentials across SEIU 925-represented job classifications.
Pay Step Increases
Establish wage increases for steps on certain wage scales that currently do not provide an increase from the previous step.
Vacation Leave
Allow employees that are traveling to make supplemental vacation requests to extend their leave of absence in order to cover travel time.
Inclement Weather and Suspended Operations
No longer require overtime-exempt positions to make up or apply accrued leave to days missed due to suspended University operations.
Removal of Disciplinary Documents
Allow for the removal of formal counseling records from an employee’s personnel file after three years.
SEIU 925 Counter-Proposals
Joint Labor Training Session
SEIU 925 proposed making the proposed labor classes available to all UW employees, instead of only SEIU 925 stewards, members, and UW managers.
Exempt Work Period Positions
SEIU 925 withdrew its proposal to define the point at which overtime-exempt employees may accrue overtime, but maintained its proposal to allow for departmental management to approve such overtime instead of the director of HR Operations.
Job Reclassification Appeals Process
SEIU 925 proposed amending UW’s counter proposal, such that a hearing officer could recommend a new job classification in cases where they determine that no current UW classifications fit the work in question.

UW Presentation

UW Proposals
Health and Safety
UW proposed prescribing a recommended order for reporting workplace health and safety concerns, beginning with the supervisor, then the UW Department of Environmental Health and Safety (EH&S), and then the Department of Labor and Industries.
The proposal also replaces a reference to an outdated Washington ergonomics policy with a reference to the EH&S website.
Layoff Units
UW proposed language updates to various layoff units to better reflect their current structure.
UW Counter-Proposals
Identical Titles List
UW presented a counter-proposal that supported SEIU 925’s proposal to add the nuclear medical technologist, imaging technologist, and respiratory care job series to the “Identical Titles” list, but declined SEIU 925’s proposal to add the cardiac sonographer and pulmonary function technologist series.
This list links wage increases received by certain SEIU 1199-represented employees at Harborview to their SEIU 925-represented counterparts at UW Medical Center, and vice-versa.
Temporary, Hourly, and Fixed Duration Employees
UW declined SEIU 925’s proposal to give such employees across-the-board raises, and instead proposed language to memorialize the existing University policy that these employees will not be “left behind” their designated pay range if their pay range increases.
Removal of Documents
UW countered SEIU 925’s proposal to allow for the removal of a formal counseling from an employee’s personnel file after three years by proposing the addition of an election of remedies provision.
Such a provision, found in other UW contracts that allow for a similar removal of documents, would establish that if a claim is brought to arbitration, it could not subsequently be brought before another judicial or administrative law forum.

Tentative Agreements

Article 23: Health and Safety
The parties tentatively agreed to UW’s proposal to establish a suggested order for reporting workplace health and safety concerns.
Article 8.14: Flex Survey
The parties tentatively agreed to SEIU 925’s proposal to delete obsolete contract language surrounding an outdated survey.

Next Steps

The next UW/SEIU 925 bargaining session is scheduled for September 7.