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Contract Gains by Other UAW Academic Unions

What types of gains are possible with a union contract?
See what other universities have won.



Union: Retroactive pay; guaranteed annual minimum increases; minimum wage increased 50% from $10 to $15/hr, and doubled to $20/hr in 2019.

No Union: Wage increases were unpredictable, determined unilaterally by UConn.

Union: Up to $2200 more per year over the life of the contract.

No Union: Wage increases unpredictable and determined unilaterally by UW.

Union: ASEs’ annual wage s have increased $9,090 per academic year.

No Union: UC’s recommended minimum salary was below the NIH minimum and some postdocs made as little as $18,000 per year. No guaranteed pay increases.

Union: All postdocs must be paid at least their NIH NRSA experienced-based step and many are paid above scale. Average salary has risen by more than $7,400 per year (an increase of 17.6%).

No Union: Unpredictable wage increases and no guaranteed annual increases.

Union: Pay increase of nearly 20% for majority of adjunct/part-time faculty in first contract. Doubling of pay rates in lowest paid departments. Minimum 3% increase for all adjuncts in each year of contract of first contract.


Union: Fee waivers broadened.

No Union: Graduate Assistants received waiver of tuition but had to pay more than $2200 per year in additional mandatory fees.

Union: Nearly $900 in new fee waivers (equal to additional 3.2%-7.6% pay increase).

No Union: 50% FTE graduate assistant received waiver of 93% of tuition, but had to pay the cost of all existing and any newly-created student fees beyond tuition.

Union: Amount covered by waiver has increased by $6,542 since our first collective bargaining agreement.


Union: Individual healthcare subsidy for all previously uncovered workers; landmark family healthcare fund created; Student dental plan fee covered.

No Union: Unilateral removal from state employee health plan in 2003, then subsequent erosion, including major cuts in 2013; UConn determined premium rates unilaterally for GAs and their families, with significant increases over time.

Union: Restoration of state employee health benefit levels;GAs pay less for better benefits.

No Union: Several years of unilateral cuts to benefits.

Union: No cuts since 2004 and numerous improvements.

No Union: Many Fellows and Paid-Directs did not receive UC-provided health insurance for themselves or dependent.

Union: All postdocs and dependents receive comprehensive UC-provided health benefits at greatly lower cost than non-union UC faculty and staff plans.

No Union: No access to paid health benefits.

Union: All adjunct/part-time faculty have access to health insurance and, based on teaching load, the university pays 50 – 100% of the individual premium cost, which can be applied towards family coverage.


Union: Breakthrough childcare fund achieved.

No Union: No childcare subsidies for GAs.

Union: Establishment of GA childcare subsidy fund.

No Union: No guarantee of childcare subsidies or other benefits for ASEs.

Union: Up to $3600 per year in subsidies.


No Union: No guarantee of paid family leave.

Union: Contractually-guaranteed paid family leave.

No Union: No leave benefits for maternity, family, medical or other reasons.

Union: In addition to up to seven days of paid leave, a grad assistant can take up to three months unpaid leave with continued health insurance coverage fully-paid by UW.

No Union: No guaranteed parental or family leave, maternity leave was only 60% of salary for five of six weeks.ave benefits for maternity, family, medical or other reasons.

Union: Parental and family leave are guaranteed; maternity leave is paid at 70% for five of six weeks and postdocs have the right to use PTO and sick leave to supplement salary. If the postdoc funding source provides for longer leave, the postdoc is entitled to it.


No Union: No guaranteed sick leave.

Union: Contractually-guaranteed sick leave.

No Union: No sick leave; TAs often had to find someone to cover their classes when sick.

Union: Up to seven days sick leave without loss of pay.


No Union: Time off on holidays or for vacation at the discretion of the department or PI, with requests often denied or ignored.

Union: If required to work on a holiday, GA must get another day off. GAs may request additional time off (e.g. for vacation), which cannot be unreasonably denied.

No Union: Time off on holidays or for vacation was at the discretion of the department or PI, with requests often denied or ignored.

Union: 4 weeks vacation time off with pay per 12-month appointment, (pro-rated).

No Union: No fixed amount of PTO. Maximum was 20 days but only at the PI’s discretion, and time off requests were frequently denied. One sick day per month; no roll over to new appointments. No guarantee of time off on UC holidays.

Union: 24 days PTO and 12 sick days available on the first day of appointment, and all 13 UC holidays. Sick days roll over to new UC appointments if unused.


Union: Appointment Security achieved.

No Union: GA appointments could be withdrawn after being offered.

Union: Contractually-guaranteed appointment security. Once a GA accepts an appointment, the University must honor it at the level of pay and benefits offered.

No Union: No guaranteed appointment length and appointments could be withdrawn after being offered.

Union: No guaranteed appointment length and appointments could be withdrawn after being offered. 50% FTE appointments must be for at least one academic year, when funding is available.

No Union: No minimum appointment length.

Union: Postdocs must be appointed for at least one year; many are appointed longer.

No Union: No job security; unpredictable, last-minute appointments.

Union: After teaching 2 of 3 semesters in three consecutive academic years, good faith consideration to reappointment and after six semesters firm reappointment rights and payments equal to the lost earnings if they were not reappointed to any and all teaching appointments.