Sexual Harassment, Abuse, and Hazard Pay?
Bargaining This Friday
This Friday, 9/24, from 8:30AM-12:30PM will be our next bargaining session!
…The FSU administration had NO RESPONSE to our COVID impact bargaining proposal. They had NO RESPONSE to our demand for hazard pay (in the form of fee remittance) and NO RESPONSE to covering our medical expenses were we or our dependents to contract COVID.
INSTEAD, at the 11th hour, FSU changed tacks and decided to return Articles 8 and 18: Sexual Harassment, Retaliation, and Discipline.
You may remember that Harassment and Discipline were two of our flagship Articles to begin this bargaining year (back in MARCH), because of the allegations against Dr. Feiock that had finally come to light. In a welcome turn of events, the University administration MADE PROGRESS towards implementing real contract changes that would better protect all graduate assistants from exploitation and abuse. These changes included:
Allowing an “anonymous complaint” process whereby Graduate Assistants can remain anonymous but also have non-punitive remedies for their harassment, such as switching classes, sections, labs, &c.
Creating an “interim” process whereby Graduate Assistants can be non-punitively protected after they file a complaint from the abusive situation
Creating a written discipline process, so that…
…Graduate Assistants cannot be disciplined “under the table” through reassignments, limiting of resources, &c.
This is a LOT of what we asked for. We have further to go, of course: Independent 3rd party investigators for sexual harassment cases, a series of progressive corrective actions (rather than just jumping from “a letter in your file” to “you’re fired”), and the inclusion of several protected categories that the University felt the need to cut (pregnant persons, international GAs, current military service members, &c.).
We will continue to fight for YOU on this, and also on COVID bargaining.
Bargaining CONTINUES, THIS FRIDAY. Will it be impact bargaining? Will it be regular bargaining? WHO KNOWS, AT THIS POINT?! Not us!!
On our side, we have our counter proposals to Articles 18 (Workplace Safety) and 8 (Harassment) ready to return this Friday.
On the University’s side, they have:
ALL of our financial Articles (2, 12, 16, 23)
Our COVID MOU (hazard pay, medical coverage)
Article 7 (Outside Employment)
Article 10 (Leaves of Absences)
Article 11 (Grievances)
Article 21 (Re-openers)
Article 24 (Presidential Consultations)
and Appendix G and H
So. You know. It sure will be an INTERESTING bargaining session!
If you have a concern about campus reopening or a story to share, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We want to make YOUR voices heard by the administration, so they can understand exactly how serious this situation is and why the current health and safety measures just aren’t enough. Even If you don’t have any particular story but are just concerned, SHOW UP to bargaining this Friday and remind the administration that all eyes are on THEM. They have the chance to do the right thing and save lives. Let’s not let them forget it.
We’ll be available in our “caucus room” for 30 minutes before Impact Bargaining this Friday. There, we will go over exactly what we’re presenting in more detail with you, so we can receive feedback from YOU, the members. We want to make sure we are representing YOUR concerns, priorities, and demands. So come to caucus at 9:30AM to make your voice heard, and then we will head over to the “main” bargaining room at 10:00AM to present those demands to the FSU administration! Looking forward to seeing you all at bargaining this Friday. Remember: united we bargain, divided we beg! In Solidarity, Vincenza Antonetta Berardo Chief Negotiator & Bargaining Chair