Notes contributed by Negotiating Team member Dr. David Johnston, Natural Sciences
On January 16, 2020, the OT-AAUP and the Oregon Tech negotiating teams met for the first session of their fifth round of bargaining.
First, the parties agreed to keep a joint spreadsheet indicating which proposals had been passed, and by whom, so that both parties are on the same page when it comes to what has been passed and received.
Then the Association team asked to discuss an email that was sent to the OT-AAUP team by Oregon Tech. In the email, the University offered the faculty a 2% raise for the 2020 calendar year, with the condition that, if accepted, the faculty could not bargain for any additional compensation for the remainder of the 2020 calendar year. Furthermore, OT-AAUP, as the designated representative of the faculty, had only until the end of business on Tuesday, January 21, 2020, to accept or decline the offer. The OT-AAUP team expressed their concern over the very short time alloted to make a decision which would financially impact all of the faculty, and requested that the Oregon Tech team ask Dr. Naganathan for an extension. Additionally, the OT-AAUP team asked why the University felt it was necessary to add the restriction of no further bargaining in 2020. In response, the Oregon Tech team simply stated that they were following the same procedure that had been used during Oregon State University’s negotiations. The OT-AAUP team was not satisfied with this answer, but agreed to move on to discuss the proposals that each team had prepared, as both teams would need to discuss the proposed raise with their respective constituents.
The teams began by discussing OT-AAUP’s counter proposal on Non-Discrimination. The Oregon Tech team was uncomfortable with including classes that are not normally legally protected, in the Non-Discrimitnation article. In response, OT-AAUP pointed out that the Non-Discrimination article in the CBA can be broader, and the inclusion of protection for certain classes, such as political belief, was important for the faculty and consistent with the culture at OIT. The Oregon Tech team said they would discuss the article in caucus and most likely present a counter proposal at a later time.
The teams then discussed OT-AAUP’s Distribution of Agreement proposal. Both parties agreed that the OT-AAUP team would clarify some of the language and present a counter proposal the following day.
The teams then moved to discuss both No Strike/No Lockout articles (linked separately above). Overall, the articles were mostly the same, as this article is fairly standard in all CBA’s. The OT-AAUP team had some concerns over the Oregon Tech teams inclusion of termination in the list of consequences for faculty participating in an illegal strike. The OT-AAUP team agreed to present a counter proposal at the next meeting, which would include some of the language from the Oregon Tech proposal, specifically concerning the Association’s responsibility to prevent and/or stop an illegal strike.
Lastly, the teams discussed Oregon Tech’s Outside Activity proposal. The OT-AAUP team was disturbed by the wording Oregon Tech chose for this article. As understood by the OT-AAUP team, the purpose of the Outside Activity article is to emphasize that a bargaining unit member’s main responsibility is to Oregon Tech, and that other employment, if permissible, is secondary. However, the OT-AAUP team expressed their concern that, based on the wording of Oregon Tech’s proposal, it seemed the University was trying to exert control over ALL aspects of a faculty member’s time, even time that is considered personal. The OT-AAUP team state they would work on a counter proposal to present at the next meeting.