Labor Relations

UW – UAW Negotiations Recap for March 12 & 15, 2021


This recap details the first and second session for the renewal of the collective bargaining agreement between the UW and UAW, set to expire on April 30, 2021. Recaps are published online on the UW Labor Relations website.

UAW Initial Bargaining Demands

UAW put forth a list outlining its bargaining demands and priorities, structured around several themes.

  • Compensation: UAW demanded that the UW must significantly increase ASE compensation and keep pace with the increase cost of living in Seattle, to include additional increases during the first year of the contract. Additionally, UAW demanded that the UW must waive all fees and ensure continuous appointments in response to COVID 19.
  • Health Insurance: UAW demanded UW administration must ensure all ASEs receive continuous health coverage while they are UW and that it should include the expansion of access to long-term mental health coverage, dependent coverage and reduction of barriers to gender-affirming coverage.
  • Campus Climate: UAW demanded that the UW must agree to expand the Diversity Equity Inclusion efforts to include expansion of compensation and support for peer-based training, advocacy, and department level DEI work and improving reporting processes.
  • Mentorship and Advising: UAW demanded UW should improve mentorship of ASEs by establishing right to secondary mentors, improving effectiveness and accountability of various mentorship roles and improving department specific support for ASE career development.
  • Leave and Caregiving: UAW demanded increased support for caregivers and leave options.

Also included in the initial bargaining demands, was that all other articles should be maintained or improved on existing terms of the ASE CBA.

UAW Initial Proposals

UAW made the following initial proposals:

  • Childcare: UAW proposed to increase the current amount of $1,250 to $3,000 per child, per quarter, per eligible ASE. No proposed changes to eligibility.
  • Fee and Tuition Waivers: UAW proposed that all ASEs should receive a waiver for all tuition and fees.
  • Insurance Programs: UAW proposed that ASE’s should receive full coverage for mental health, gender-affirming services and reproductive health and that the University should pay 100% of the costs for health, dental and vision premiums for dependents effective October 1, 2021. The Union additionally proposed that there should be reductions in out-of-pocket costs and they should expand eligibility for GAIP coverage beyond ASE’s with 50% appointments.
  • Non-Discrimination and Harassment: UAW proposed to move the Memorandum of Understanding regarding Sexual Harassment and Prevention Training to Article 20,- Non-Discrimination and Harassment and update the section to reflect the training’s name: Empowering Prevention & Inclusive Communities (EPIC). Also included was an increase in the number of ASEs hired to conduct the training – from two 50% FTEs each quarter to six 50% FTE’s each quarter, mandatory EPIC training for all incoming ASE’s, EPIC training, included trainers hired during Summer Quarter, and the development of Peer Equity programs that would include 40 ASE’s for Postdocs to implement programs with 8 hours of paid training and that each individual would receive a stipend of $500 per quarter.

Additionally, UAW proposed that there should be a university fund for $30,000 per year to assist in expenses for International and Immigrant ASE’s that would be effective July 1, 2021.

  • Wages: UAW proposed that wages should remain competitive with the Global Challenge States (GCS) and that wages should be increased to the base rate to match the top of the GCS effective July 1 of each year. UAW proposed that all ASE variable rates and hourly should be increased by the same percentage as the base rate.
  • New Article – Individual Development Plans and Program Assessments: UAW proposed language to include an assigned primary supervisor, an individual development plan and performance expectation, progression assessments, and supervisor training.
  • Appointment and Reappointment Notification and Job Description: UAW proposed to add language to the list of information that should be included in ASE offer letters. They proposed including UW Benefits Office contact Information and explanation of how to confirm benefits eligibility if necessary.
  • Union Rights: UAW proposed to add “GAIP Preliminary Eligibility File” to the list of data the Union receives each pay period.
  • Post-Bachelor Fellows: The UW proposed updates to the IHME Post-Bachelor Fellow Appendix which included wage increases for the PBFs that match the percentage wage increase for the ASEs and integrating the MOU on vacation for PBFs into the Appendix.

Employer Initial Proposals

The Employer made the following initial proposals:

  • Insurance Programs: The Employer proposed to update the referencing contract years, 2019-2020 and 2020-2021.
  • Union Security: The Employer proposed to update the way the Union submits dues to the University each pay period, moving to an online web-based submission for new or changed dues deduction authorizations to streamline the process.
  • New Article – Resignation and Abandonment: The Employer proposed a new article that would encourage employees to provide at least a two weeks’ notice of resignation with the allowance of a withdrawal within 24 hours. The Employer proposed that if an ASE fails to report to work and fails to report the absence to their supervisor on three consecutive workdays, that there would be a presumption of resignation and that the determination to not reinstate the ASE would not be subject to the CBA grievance procedure.

Ground Rules

The parties reached a tentative agreement on a series of ground rules for bargaining on March 12, including no addition of new items after April 5, 2021, unless by mutual agreement.

Tentative Agreements

The parties reached a tentative agreement for current contract language for the following articles:


Article 1 – Purpose and Intent
Article 2 – Recognition
Article 3 – Definitions
Article 9 – Health and Safety
Article 12 – Intellectual Property and Scholarly Misconduct
Article 18 – Management Rights
Article 23 – Severability
Article 27 – Travel
Article 28 – Union-Management Committee
Article 35 – Workspace and Materials

The parties agreed to sunset the following understandings:

MOU – Lump sum Payment
LOU – U-PASS Coalition Bargaining

Next Steps

The next UW-UAW bargaining session is scheduled for April 1.