After half a year of bargaining in good faith, we finally got management’s insulting counter-offer to our proposal for a fair salary increase for all of us, including a living wage for grad workers.
The administration is proposing a 2.25 percent raise for this school year and 2 percent in each of the next three years. That’s not a typo. With inflation running at a 40-year hight, management thinks we should be happy taking a pay cut of around 6 percent in real terms! The administration rejected our proposal to raise grad worker salaries closer to a living wage—despite the fact that grads can’t afford to live in the places where they study and work full time. Oh, and to add another insult to the heap: management is demanding we defer our raises for six months every year—so nothing retroactive to July 1 of the current year.
This “offer” is shameful. With inflation so high, all of us have been forced to make hard choices. Students are deciding whether to pay rent or utilities, parents are deciding if they can afford childcare or cover their kids’ college tuition. But the administration—which is sitting on record financial reserves of $818.6 million—doesn’t seem to care about how we’ll make ends meet. If any of us still had hopes that an administration led by President Holloway would treat us with the respect we deserve, those hopes have to be reexamined.
For more about management’s behavior in Tuesday’s bargaining session—including their proposal to expand discipline against faculty and grad workers for “conduct unbecoming”—read the latest bargaining update by our Newark colleague Whit Strub.
If you want to help us express our outrage to management, tell us what you think about this “offer” and the administration that made it. Click here and leave your thoughts on this form; with your permission, we’ll share them anonymously with management.
We already knew that management wouldn’t concede to our demands unless we showed we were ready to take action. We took an important step in our campaign for a fair contract with the wonderful turnout on all our campuses on December 6. But we need to be prepared to do more next semester. In January, we’re rerunning the Strike School sessions that more than 100 of you attended this fall. If you’re ready to step up your game and start organizing your colleagues for the battles ahead of us, click here to sign up for two 90-minute Zoom and hybrid workshops developed and led by member-organizers and union staff.
Becky and Todd
Rebecca Givan, President, Rutgers AAUP-AFT
Todd Wolfson, General Vice President, Rutgers AAUP-AFT
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