Labor Relations

Negotiations Recap for April 26, 2013

This recap details the 16th bargaining session between the UW and AFT.

AFT Counter-Proposals

AFT delivered several counter-proposals at the end of the last bargaining session, which it discussed in further detail at this meeting:

Union Rights
AFT proposed that UW send the union an employee roster on the date of the first final payroll calculation after the start of each quarter, and that employees may print a hard copy of the contract at UW’s expense.
Probationary Period
AFT proposed that lecturers be eligible to exit the probationary period after either two quarters at full-time or six courses, or the equivalent thereof – whichever is sooner. AFT proposed that the supervising director meet with lecturers in the probationary period quarterly to provide guidance and mentoring.
Grievance and Arbitration Procedures
AFT proposed that UW inform the union before a grievance meeting of management’s anticipated attendees. AFT declined UW’s language stipulating that a claim brought to arbitration could not subsequently be brought before additional judicial or administrative law forums.
Management Rights
AFT declined UW’s proposed language delineating the right of management to schedule hours of work, to recruit as well as lay off, and to make decisions involving course content and instruction. AFT proposed language memorializing UW’s obligation to bargain over mandatory subjects.
AFT proposed to allow for withdrawal of a resignation within 10 calendar days of its submission, as opposed to the UW’s proposed five calendar days.
Personnel Files
AFT agreed in concept with UW’s proposal to forward a copy of any adverse material placed in an extension lecturer’s personnel file to the employee, but proposed a requirement that management secure a signature of receipt from the employee for any such material.
Corrective Action
AFT proposed that if an employee is not informed of an investigation within 30 days of the date management learns of the incident in question, it would cease to be grounds for discipline.

AFT maintained its previous proposals on articles pertaining to University closure, performance evaluation, and agreement and conformity to law.

UW Counter-Proposals

Union Rights
UW tentatively agreed to AFT’s proposal to send the union an employee roster on the date of the first final payroll calculation after the start of each quarter. UW proposed language to memorialize that when AFT rents a room at the University, it is responsible for paying any applicable fees.
Probationary Period
UW tentatively agreed to AFT’s proposal that lecturers be eligible to exit the probationary period after the sooner of two quarters at full-time or six courses. UW proposed that management observe, guide, and mentor employees in the probationary period as often as is possible and appropriate.
University Closure
UW maintained its proposal to require extension lecturers in programs that have defined requirements for days or hours taught to make up classes missed due to University closure.
Personnel Files
UW declined AFT’s proposal to require management to secure a signature of receipt on materials forwarded to an extension lecturer, and proposed language to memorialize that personnel files will be subject to applicable records retention schedules.

Tentative Agreement

Article 1: Recognition
The parties tentatively agreed to language recognizing AFT as the exclusive bargaining representative for all full-time and regular part time IELP extension lecturers, excluding other employees such as supervisors and hourly and confidential employees.

Further Dialogue

Cost of AFT’s Economic Proposal

UW presented a cost estimate of AFT’s initial proposal on compensation, put forth at the bargaining session on February 8, 2013.

Based on the information available, UW approximated the costs associated with placing employees on a higher initial step and providing automatic step increases, cost of living adjustments, and merit increases, as well as paying employees for equivalent prior experience outside the UW.

UW estimated that AFT’s compensation proposal could cost IELP an additional $1.2 million for the first year of the contract alone, representing an increase to base wage of more than 39 percent.

UW Compensation

UW emphasized that its response to AFT’s compensation proposal will align with the University’s overall goal of providing realistic general wage increases as part of an institution-wide reemergence from the recession. UW explained that this will likely be in the form of 2 percent wage increases each year for the 2013-2015 biennium, contingent upon legislative approval and appropriation of funds.

UW explained that such increases would be determined by merit, while incorporating some recognition of seniority, and could potentially provide for increases of higher or lower than 2 percent depending on a lecturer’s performance.

Next Steps

The next UW-AFT bargaining session is scheduled for May 10.