Negotiations Recap for February 25, 2015
This recap details the sixth session for renewal of the collective bargaining agreement between the UW and UAW.
Amy Hawkins, Director of WorkLife and Childcare Access, provided an overview of current benefits and discussions around childcare at the UW. UW currently has four onsite programs with large wait-lists. Other benefits include priority access to Puget Sound Bright Horizons centers, but UW recognizes the need to expand childcare access and options. UW also informed the union that Virginia Mason will be ending its TLC sick child care service in March, and that the University is searching for viable alternatives.
UW is currently researching various potential short-term solutions to increase childcare access this year, including nanny-share and babysitter options. UW is also exploring long-term solutions such as building another childcare center on or near campus.
In response to UAW’s proposal for ASEs to be eligible for CareLink, Amy Hawkins spoke about the program. CareLink is an advisory program available to UW employees eligible for Public Employees Benefits Board (PEBB) benefits.
While CareLink’s primary focus is counseling services, other components include 30 minutes of free legal or financial consultation over the phone, childcare and eldercare referral, and departmental trainings and workshops. Such trainings are often contracted through an outside organization and are topical, rather than customized for specific situations at UW.
Grievance Procedure – UW proposed language to support UAW’s goal of a more efficient grievance process. UW proposed accelerating what is currently Step 2 (involving the Dean of the Graduate School or designee) to occur at Step 1, and adding to Step 2 the option for mediation, a non-binding service whereby a third party helps to facilitate understanding. UW’s language would allow the parties to skip Step One or Two upon mutual agreement.
The next UW-UAW bargaining session is scheduled for February 26.