Vote on GC chapter specific platform
45 chapter members present voted to approve the platform.
We started with an update on bargaining, namely that CUNY management has not come to the table. Members looked over contract demands platform for our chapter developed in discussions over the past year. These demands address the vagueness in demands of the PSC bargaining team when it comes to graduate workers, who are overrepresented in our chapter.
Members asked questions and discussed the proposed platform, including how a centralized payment system might work, demands for other titles, whether the bargaining team members from our chapter will commit to fighting for these demands, and health care coverage. One member of the bargaining team was present and pointed out that the Committee for Adjuncts and Part-Timers (CAP) approved the PSC bargaining agenda without an explicit salary demand for adjuncts and that agenda should be supported.
There was a discussion about salary steps. Is it good to have more steps? People pointed out that if it’s a choice between more money and steps, priority is to fight for more money in the pocket of everyone. Always better to compress the salary schedule if we can.
We also talked about the tremendous gains that Rutgers graduate works won through their strike: 40,000/year is 35% more than the top grad worker pay at CUNY.
We discussed an amendment to institute a rent freeze on GC housing. CUNY is our employer and our landlord. The amendment passed. The amendment on health care coverage demand also passed. Final version here.
The GC library is getting $100,000 cut. Publics Lab is closing. There are major cuts to Macaulay Teaching and Learning Collaboratory which is staffed by graduate students, who will now lose their jobs. SLU management is talking about cuts to adjuncts and NTAs. There are concerns that the 6th and 7th year funding may be cut. One place to bring up budget cuts is at the upcoming Board of Trustees meeting.
GC Community Meeting
We discussed the upcoming town hall meeting (04/25) with Executive Vice Chancellor Hansel at the Graduate Center. The following is a list of questions. Members created a bingo card and handouts with demands.
Professional schools labor management
We heard updates about labor management preparation and meetings at SPS, SPH, SLU, and Macaulay. These meetings are contractually protected opportunities to confront management about workplace issues twice a semester. At SPS, where remote work agreements and invasive course observation remain hot issues, there is an LM meeting coming in early May. At SPH, an organizing committee is forming to organize LM meetings, which have not been held there for years. The same is true at Macaulay, which faces deep cuts. SLU is on track with two LM meetings this semester, focused on building democratic and transparent decision making at the school.
May 8 Board of Trustees
May 11 City Hall Rally