The bargaining teams continue to move full-steam ahead, having met for our sixth straight meeting on Wednesday. Even though nothing was formally signed, we nevertheless made progress.
The UFF presented its final article, Article 20 (Grievance Procedure and Arbitration), where we are seeking to streamline two procedures. Our first proposal was that, instead of meeting with one arbitrator to determine whether the issue is subject to arbitration and then with a different arbitrator to address the substantive issue, those meetings be combined and only one arbitrator used. The second was about the need to align language with current practice in the selection of an arbitrator. The BOT’s response was supportive of the second proposal, with modifications, but not the first.
The discussion of Appendix K continued, based on UFF’s latest proposal, which seeks to remove the notion that in order to avoid a possible conflict of interest faculty must disclose the financial interests of non-immediate family members. This is a particular problem when it comes to their relatively small investments–$5,000–in large publicly-traded entities related to the faculty member’s institutional expertise.
The final topic was the BOT’s counter-proposal on Article 19 (Conflict of Interest/Outside Activity). They proposed new language about conflicts of commitment, which are outside activities “interfering with the full performance of the faculty member’s professional or institutional responsibilities or obligations.” Are you wasting time walking the dog that you could be spending at work? They insisted that curtailing such activities was not their intention, and they didn’t balk at UFF’s informally proposed alternative wording, which we’ll formalize for the next session. Regarding consensual sexual relationships with undergraduates, they reiterated their strong opposition to such relationships and again proposed banning them, this time including not just “sexual and romantic relationships,” as in their previous proposal, but “amorous” ones as well.
No response yet to the UFF’s Salaries proposal of the previous week.
The next bargaining session is scheduled for Wed., June 8, from 2:00-5:00. Bargaining sessions are open to faculty, and we appreciate having you! Meetings are face-to-face at the FSU Training Center (493 Stadium Drive). We are pleased that faculty are showing up in person and via Zoom. If you would like to attend remotely, please respond to this message and we’ll send you the Zoom link. (Alternatively, if you retained a previous bargaining Zoom link, it will still work.)
Regular bargaining updates can be found at our webpage: https://uff-fsu.org/
The key to a strong Collective Bargaining Agreement is a strong membership base, so if you are not a member, please join! There has never been a more important time for us to stand together. https://uff-fsu.org/wp/join/
Irene Padavic and Scott Hannahs, Co-Chief Negotiators, UFF-FSU