Contract Implementation Update
CONTRACT IMPLEMENTATION UPDATE
EQUITY INCREASES, PAYCHECK SCHEDULES, UNION-BLAMING, & MORE
MARCH 12, 2019
We are writing to update you on the progress we have made implementing our new contract, and to inform you of some emerging issues.
First, we are delighted to have successfully fought and won equity increases for members who have passed one major review but changed departments or colleges in between Winter 2018 and Fall 2018. Because these lecturers had fewer than 11 years of service and were restarting as Lec Is or IIIs in new positions, HR asserted they were therefore ineligible for any equity increases. Reaching a settlement with UM on this issue without going to arbitration is a terrific win for our union and the affected members.
Second, an issue that was highlighted by our historic raises this year is the time lag between when 12-month employee paychecks start for the new academic year (July 1) and when raises go into effect (Sept 1). This time lag is a problem for both lecturers and tenure-track faculty, and this policy has been in effect for many years. Lecturer IIs in particular have to make a one-time election on whether to stay on the 8 month pay schedule, or choose to be paid over 12 months. The issue went unnoticed by many for a long time because the raises were so small it didn’t make much difference.
“REACHING A SETTLEMENT WITH UM [ON THE ISSUE OF EQUITY RAISES FOR LECTURERS STARTING IN NEW POSITIONS WITH FEWER THAN 11 YEARS OF SERVICE] WITHOUT GOING TO ARBITRATION IS A TERRIFIC WIN FOR OUR UNION AND THE AFFECTED MEMBERS.”
Union leadership is well aware of this issue, and, assuming member interest, we will include it on our bargaining platform during our next contract campaign. In the meantime, we developed a chart of pros and cons of 8 vs 12 month pay schedules. We want our new Lecturer IIs to be educated about the consequences of this one-time choice.
“EVERY TIME THERE HAS BEEN A NEW CONTRACT, FOR LEO OR GEO, BUDGET CUTS HAVE FOLLOWED, AND BLAME HAS BEEN ASSIGNED TO THE UNION…WHAT WE ARE SEEING IS BUSINESS AS USUAL.”
At the same time many of our members are enjoying finally making a living wage, we are also hearing a lot of union-blaming from management. LEO is being blamed for everything from increases in class sizes, to budget cuts large and small. We are even hearing of members being denied equity and merit raises, “because of the new contract.” This is a bit much considering that the same college has refused to give merit or equity raises to lecturers for the past fifteen years. In fact, every time there has been a new contract, for LEO or GEO, budget cuts have followed, and blame has been assigned to the Union. So on some level, what we are seeing is business as usual.
At the same time, please be aware of a few concerns:
If class sizes increase, let us know, as our contract has workload protections.
If layoffs occur in your department, please let us know, so we can ensure layoffs occur in accordance with the contract, and positions are not being filled with new hires.
For those lecturers undergoing major reviews:
Chair, Ann Arbor Contract Implementation/Organizing Committee