2022 Bargaining Proposals

Bargaining is the process by which we negotiate a new contract with the university that will determine our working conditions (wages, benefits, etc.). By demonstrating to the University of California administration that Academic Student Employees (ASEs) are an organized majority that will pressure the university through collective actions until our demands are met, we can win a contract that builds on our previous victories and makes UC a more equitable research environment. 

Use this page to keep track of bargaining proposals as negotiations with UC progress and evolve throughout the campaign.

Summary of Article Proposals

Wages & Benefits

ASEs live and work in some of the most expensive cities in the world. Off-campus, inflation and skyrocketing rents eat into our wages and force us into long commutes, while in UC-controlled housing many of us pay more than half our wages back to our employer in rent. We need wages adjusted to the real cost of living, greater access to public transportation, and an expansion of high-quality, affordable, UC-operated housing open to ASEs and the broader community.

See summary of wages & benefits proposals

Article 30: Wages
ASEs deserve a living wage. We demand an immediate cost of living adjustment to our wages, uniform across all campuses and large enough to lift all ASEs out of rent burden. To beat rent burden, the base 20 hour/week ASE wage must be at least 3.33 times the highest median rent in any campus locality (no more than 30% of income goes to rent). Going forward, we demand yearly wage increases of either 10% or the largest rate of median rent increase in any campus locality, whichever is higher.

New Article: Housing
UC-controlled housing must be affordable, high-quality, and guaranteed to all ASEs who want it. We demand a five-year housing guarantee on every campus, with rent capped at 30% of the base 20 hour/week ASE wage. Where existing UC-controlled housing stock is inadequate, we demand to plan and implement the construction of new housing jointly with UC. This housing will be rent controlled, owned and maintained by UC, with excess units open to all UC workers and community-members. In the meantime, we demand to bargain over rents, maintenance, new construction, and assignment of available units in UC-controlled housing.

Article 21: Parking and Transit & New Article: Relocation
Equity at work means no ASE should bear the steep costs of parking, transit, and relocation. We demand free regional transit passes for all ASEs, reliable UC-operated transit, and remission of new ASE relocation costs. To help meet UC’s ambitious climate goals, we demand incentives for bike, mass transit, and carpool commuters, and improved bike infrastructure.

Article 14: Health Benefits
Healthcare is a basic workplace right. We demand expanded health benefits for ASEs, to ensure insurance coverage — including mental healthcare and full-spectrum trans and reproductive healthcare — for all ASEs and our dependents.

Article 11: Fee Remission
No ASE should pay to work at UC. We demand full tuition and fee remission for every ASE working at least 10 hours/week — including full NRST remission for international workers.

Article 6: Defined Contribution and University Retirement Plans
ASEs deserve to save for a dignified retirement. We demand all ASEs be eligible to participate in retirement plans, with UC covering any and all administrative fees.

Equity at Work

Equity in the workplace is critical to expanding access to opportunity at UC. We demand better community safety, stronger protections against discrimination and harassment, a collaborative process to meet access needs, and expanded education/training to counter racism and micro-aggressions.

See summary of equity proposals

New Article: Community Safety
Workers and students deserve a safe workplace. We demand that UC divest from UCPD’s budget and invest in mental health services, peer-led trainings on anti-harassment & anti-discrmination, and other programs to serve underrepresented communities on campus. All non-emergency situations should be handled by unarmed Community Service Officers (CSOs) or trained Mental Health respondents. The use of riot control gear and tactics is banned. 

Article 20: Non-discrimination & New Article: Anti-Bullying and Peer-Led Trainings
No one should be bullied, harassed or discriminated against on the job. ASEs already have the right to handle harassment and discrimation through our transparent, timely, and neutral grievance process in addition to Title IX or other avenues — but we need much more. We demand longer timelines for filing grievances, and independent investigations for sexual harassment cases, as well as greater access to lactation spaces and all-gender restrooms. We also demand paid, peer-led trainings for all ASEs to ensure ASEs know their full rights and protections regarding discrimination and harassment. These trainings will include content on sexual harrassment, anti-discrimination, intersectional power dynamics, anti-racism, and micro-aggressions. 

Article 23: Reasonable Accommodation Access Needs
Workers should hold the power and final say to decide whether and how their access needs are met, without having to go through onerous and unfair processes of obtaining medical proof. 

Article 17: Leaves
ASEs deserve to take paid and dignified leave when we need it. We demand expanded paid leave periods — from two to five days per quarter and from three to ten days per semester — and four months of paid childbirth leave.

Article 4: Childcare
Working parents deserve childcare. We demand access to childcare for all minor dependents, and a choice between full tuition subsidy for UC-affiliated childcare programs and equivalent reimbursement for non-UC programs.

New Article: Visas & Immigration
No ASE should pay to work at UC, regardless of immigration status. All fees associated with applying for or renewing visas and English proficiency exams will be covered by the university. Appointment security and pay should not be jeopardized by conditions outside of ASEs’ reasonable control, including visa processing delays and/or travel restrictions.

Union Rights

Our contract is only as strong as our ability to enforce it. To protect the rights and benefits we negotiate with UC, we need to improve both our grievance process and our ability to inform our coworkers about their union and contract at new employee union orientations. And, to make UC a better place for all workers, we need more rights to act in solidarity when our union siblings are on strike.

See summary of union rights proposals

Article 12: Grievance and Arbitration
UC violates our contract every day. When they do, we need a speedy and flexible grievance and arbitration process: for an ASE facing late pay, overwork, or discrimination, justice delayed is justice denied! We demand more flexible timelines for ASEs to file grievances and appeals, and faster timelines for the UC to respond. Moreover, we need to get rid of bifurcation (an additional and harmful step in the grievance process), and require UC to engage in mediation before a grievance goes to a neutral arbiter.

Article 31: Waiver and Past Practice
In such uncertain times, we need a more powerful voice in bargaining over changes to our workplace. We demand the end of unilateral changes to our working conditions.

Article 28: Union Access and Rights & Article 29: Union Security
ASEs have the right to know our rights, and must be given an opportunity to join as members when we are first hired — this is what makes our union powerful. We demand that every new ASE has a meaningful union orientation at the department level, and that UC commits to full collection and forwarding of Membership Election Forms following orientations.

Article 19: No Strikes
Solidarity is the foundation of our union. In 2003, ASEs won the right to honor our conscience and refuse to cross any union’s picket line at UC. Every time we’re at the bargaining table, we fight against UC’s attempts to weaken this hard-earned right. This time we want more: we demand the right to strike in sympathy with our union siblings.

Job security

Strong job security protections mean that ASEs can keep and perform our jobs. This part of the contract makes sure that we are paid fairly and on time, for all of our labor, and that the UC cannot fire or discipline us without reason. In addition to protecting the rights we already have, we need year-round funding guarantees, and caps on class sizes to deliver the quality teaching that our students deserve.

See summary of job security proposals

Articles 2-3: Appointment Notification and Security
ASEs deserve financial security and stability. We demand multi-year and year-long funding guarantees for ASEs — including summer funding. We also demand more accessible appointment notification documents, and the full compliance of all hiring departments with these new policies. 

New Article: Class Sizes
Smaller classes mean quality teaching. We demand that departments establish class size caps and policies, tailored to course requirements. This will allow ASEs to devote more of our time to individual student learning needs, while keeping our workloads manageable. Enrollments and class sizes have been exploding for nearly two decades in the UC — but even if this critical ingredient to high-caliber instruction is not a priority for UC, ASEs are united in our commitment to excellent public education.

Article 8: Discipline and Dismissal
No ASE should be dismissed or disciplined without good cause. UC wants to weaken the discipline and dismissal protections we have, and gain more leeway to place ASEs on paid investigatory leave. We disagree. Maintaining our current just cause guarantees is critical to maintaining a secure workplace.

Article 22: Posting
Clear and accessible posting of ASE positions ensures a transparent hiring process. UC wants to remove this requirement entirely; again we disagree. It is critical that every ASE knows where and how to apply for our jobs.

Article 32: Workload
ASEs have the right to be paid for the hours we work. Our workload protections are strong and enforceable already, but we demand more transparent work expectations, and more tools for ASEs to prevent arbitrary changes to our jobs.

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