United Faculty of Florida - Florida State University - Graduate Assistants United (UFF-FSU-GAU) represents and advocates for the interests of its members and all GAs at Florida State University. GAU was founded in 2008 and is the only legally recognized collective bargaining agent for GAs at FSU; we seek to improve working conditions and defend the working rights of all GAs. GAU's first contract was ratified in the Fall of 2009, ensuring that all GAs across the FSU campus receive fair and equitable treatment as students and employees. Since this first contract was negotiated with the university administration, we have increased the minimum stipend repeatedly, secured multiple across-the-board performance raises, increased the health insurance subsidy, secured Family Medical Leave for all GAs, and advocated for the rights of students, as individuals and as groups, through the grievance process.
The current goals of GAU are to meet and exceed the benefit levels enjoyed by graduate students at other universities with preeminent status. Specifically, we want to achieve 100% health insurance reimbursement subsidies and 100% tuition and fees payment for all eligible GAs. By coming together, we can make improvements in our lives and do much more together than we can alone. Help us make FSU competitive with other universities in the state of Florida. More members mean more leverage, which leads to better benefits.
Since establishing ourselves and negotiating our first contract, we have made significant strides in improving working conditions across campus. Here are some highlights of which we're especially proud:
- We ended the random lottery system used to grant health insurance subsidies, making these a guaranteed benefit for GAs that purchase student health insurance, and we have dramatically raised the amount of the subsidy.
- We have raised the minimum stipend by nearly $5,000, and secured numerous raises for those earning above the minimum.
- We've added stronger protections against overworking GAs beyond what their FTE allows and established procedures to address unfair workloads.
- We drastically expanded the right for GAs to work and volunteer outside of their departments without unnecessary and restrictive departmental oversight.
Just imagine what we can do next with your help!