February 22, 2023

Rally with us TOMORROW to Tell Sinai: Stop Stalling! Thursday, 2/23 at 12:30pm.

Yesterday we met Sinai for the 13th time at the bargaining table, almost five months since we started bargaining. We opened the discussion by asking Sinai about our proposal to provide an extension to Postdoc Housing we passed almost three weeks ago, which Sinai was still not prepared to answer.

Sinai passed three counters on Union Security,  Prohibition Against Discrimination & Harassment, and Health & Safety, which we last countered over two months ago. While we saw improvements in some areas like safety equipment, we were dismayed to find that Sinai also tried to move backwards in others, proposing to weaken basic protections intended to ensure a safe workplace that were already agreed upon in a previous counter proposal. This is especially concerning due to Sinai’s recent resistance to agreeing to other fundamental rights, and does not strike us as a good faith approach to these negotiations.

In Prohibition against Discrimination & Harassment, Sinai continued to reject our proposed language on timeliness and interim and immediate measures, which are actions Sinai would be required to take to protect postdocs who report discrimination or harassment from further harm, including adjusting work schedules and locations where needed. They also continued to reject our proposed definitions of what would constitute harassment, discrimination, or abuse. These behaviors are underreported at Sinai compared to national levels, which our proposal would help to address. 

We then asked clarifying questions and passed five counter proposals on TrainingWorkloadProfessional DevelopmentEmployment Records, and Appointment Security.

Frustratingly, we ran out of time to pass all of our counters, Sinai was not able to respond to our initial question on housing, and neither side had time to respond fully to clarifying questions raised during the discussion.

It seems clear that Sinai does not currently share our sense of urgency, and may not prioritize making progress quickly without more pressure. In response to the slow pace of bargaining and Sinai’s unwillingness to agree to basic worker rights for postdocs, we are holding a rally tomorrow (Thu Feb 23) at 12:30pm at 98th St and Madison AvePlease click here to RSVP and let us know that you are joining.

Our next bargaining session will take place on Wednesday, March 8 at 2pm EST. Click here to attend an upcoming session.

Please don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions or thoughts.

Yajing Xu
SPOC-UAW Bargaining Committee