AP Voices: Administrative professionals organizing for change
June 04, 2012
10 Answers You Won't Get From UC
As we talk to our co-workers about forming a union for UC’s administrative professional employees, we often hear the same questions from different people. Following are answers to some of the most common queries about UPTE, University Professional & Technical Employees.

Will UC know I signed a card supporting UPTE as our union?
No. "Authorization cards" are collected by UPTE and delivered directly to the California Public Employment Relations Board (PERB). The PERB is the public agency responsible for overseeing union elections at UC.

What kinds of things are included in a union contract?
A union contract includes language on most of the issues that affect our jobs, including wages, performance evaluations, career development, pensions, health benefits, layoffs, parking, and child care. To see one of UPTE’s existing UC contracts (for research professionals), click here.

Who does the bargaining?
We will elect bargaining teams from among our coworkers. Team members receive training from experienced UPTE bargainers and by attending classes. Professional and legal advice is available to the team.

Who decides what we fight for?
We do. After we vote for UPTE as our union, everyone is invited to complete a bargaining survey to share their priorities. Administrative professionals from around the state will meet at a
Deborah Gordon
 Deborah Gordon,
 Student Affairs Officer III,  UCSD
“bargaining conference.” At the conference, administrative professionals will discuss and decide what issues should be raised at the bargaining table and we’ll vote on our top priorities.

Why is this taking so long?
To get an election to vote for UPTE, we need to contact 16,000+ administrative professionals statewide, and talk to each of them about what a union contract could mean for us. (Just trying to locate people can be a challenge!) We’re moving as quickly as we can, but the process is accelerated with your help. If all of our supporters could just talk with one co-worker, it would make a big difference.

What would dues be and when will I start to pay?
Dues will begin only after we vote to approve our first contract. Dues for administrative professionals will be $20 per month. Each year that we negotiate at least a 2% pay increase, maximum dues will rise by $5.

Where would my dues go?
Dues money covers the expense of bargaining with the University, the cost of grievance arbitrations, training in health & safety, rent for offices at campuses,  payroll for administrative and organizing staff, printing, and postage. Our complete audited income and expense reports are available on UPTE’s website.

UPTE has a proven record of successful representation of University of California professional employees. UPTE is the elected union representative for 5,400 research professional, 3,900 technical, and 3,400 health care professional employees at UC. UPTE is proud to be part of the Communications Workers of America, which represents staff
at Rutgers University, University
of Tennessee, University of Texas,
Laurel Lucia & Keith Pavlik
 Laurel Lucia, Project/Policy  Analyst 2, UCB & Keith Pavlik, Sr Publications Coordinator, UCSF
part-time faculty at three California community colleges, and state and municipal workers in Arizona, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Wisconsin and other areas. UPTE has consistently negotiated regular, guaranteed pay increases for UC employees.

Will UPTE interfere with my getting a reclassification?
UPTE supports people in pursuing careers at the University of California. One way to build a career is through the reclassification system. UPTE wants members to succeed, and offers training classes and resources to assist employees who want to pursue job reclassifications at UC.

Have additional questions?

Ask UPTE at APs@upte-cwa.org. We’ll share what other people are asking too.

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