Labor Relations

UAW RSE – UW Negotiations Recap for April 12


This recap details the twenty fifth virtual session between the University of Washington (UW) and United Auto Workers (UAW) Local 4121 for the first collective bargaining agreement (CBA) for Research Scientist Engineers (RSEs). Recaps are published online on the UW Labor Relations website.

Employer Counter Proposals

Management Rights

In response to the Union the Employer reasserted much of their previous proposal making a small housekeeping edit regarding managements right to schedule overtime.

Non Discrimination and Harassment

The Employer added proposed language stating inappropriate workplace behavior by employees, supervisors, and/or managers would not be tolerated. The Employer proposed to link to the UW Workplace Violence policy.

Retaining Institutional Knowledge

The Employer proposed to make this an MOU for the length of the initial contract. The Employer added proposed language to the determining factors that would make an RSE eligible to apply for bridge funding.

Union Counter Proposals


In response to the Employer the Union changed their proposed language so it now states all employees working between December 20, 2021 and the date of ratification, who had not received a permanent salary increase during that time totaling 3.25% would receive an across-the-board increase of 3.25% or the difference between the percent increase they did receive and 3.25% so they would receive at least a 3.25% total increase. The Union proposed that within 90 days of ratification, employees would receive an increase to the new proposed minimums that the Union is proposing or a 24% increase, whichever is larger. The Union proposed that in subsequent years of the contract, each September 1st, all employees would receive a salary increase equivalent to the percentage change of the salary/wage threshold for overtime exempt workers in Washington state.


In response to the Employer the Union lowered their proposal so it now states overtime eligible employees may work up to 12 hours, down from 15, of overtime per work week without preapproval.

Retaining Institutional Knowledge

In response to the Employer the Union agreed to much of the Employers language but added proposed new language stating an RSE would be eligible to apply for bridge funding if they will not have funding for more than 50% of their salary.

Next Steps

The next UAW and UW bargaining session is scheduled for April 19 and will be held virtually.