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Initial Bargaining Demands for Academic Researchers United / UAW Local 5810

Academic Researchers at the University of California -- Researchers, Project Scientists, Specialists, and Coordinators of Public Programs -- present the following contract demands to improve our working conditions and thereby advance research programs at UC. These demands are based on over 2,400 bargaining surveys completed by a majority of Academic Researchers (ARs). Our demands include, but are not limited to:
I. Support successful career paths for Academic Researchers
  • Create a timely, fair, and transparent process for appointments, reappointments, and promotions; additionally, increase minimum appointment lengths.
  • Improve access to career development resources, teaching opportunities, and training, and support ARs in establishing independent research programs.
  • Guarantee ARs proper credit, pay, and support for all job duties including authorship, service, grant writing, and mentoring, and control over the dissemination of their research products.
  • Ensure continuity of research programs by providing layoff protection -- including during funding gaps -- and other policies that promote AR retention.
II. Improve pay and benefits to match the value of Academic Researchers’ work
  • Implement a competitive pay structure that reflects AR contributions and experience, and accounts for the high cost of living in California.
  • Improve medical, dental, vision, and retirement benefits, provide equal benefits to all ARs regardless of appointment length or percentage, and reduce out-of-pocket costs without compromising research grants.
  • Provide flexible, guaranteed, and transparent access to paid vacation and sick days, as well as medical, family, and other leaves of absence.  
  • Improve access to university facilities and programs including subsidized housing, transit, parking, and tuition.
III. Build an inclusive, accessible, equitable, and diverse research community
  • Establish strong and meaningful protections against discrimination, sexual harassment, bullying, retaliation, and ethics violations.
  • Provide childcare support, paid leave for all new parents, flexible scheduling, and other family-friendly policies.
  • Increase stability for international ARs via timely visa processing and support for transitioning to permanent residency, full coverage of all visa and immigration-related costs, no loss of pay during visa processing, and the option to elect their visa type.
IV. Foster a safe, fair, and productive work environment
  • Guarantee fair and transparent health and safety protections, provide all necessary workspaces and materials, and a reasonable workload.
  • Establish just cause protections against unfair discipline and dismissal, a fair grievance procedure, and access to neutral, binding arbitration.
  • Recognize and allow for the performance of all union representation duties, including ensuring all new Academic Researchers a union orientation.

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