Initial Bargaining Demands for 2021 Postdoc Contract Negotiations

The global pandemic and the relentless rise in the cost of living in the vicinity of University of California’s campuses have exposed and exacerbated deep inequities. These demands reflect the unwavering commitment of 7,000 Postdocs to improve equity and to serve the public through research and education. Our labor is essential to UC and LBL’s world-class research programs, and better working conditions for Postdocs will enhance and improve research outcomes.
  • Compensation and Benefits. Increase compensation to match Postdoc expertise and experience in order to recruit and retain a diverse workforce that keeps the UC system a top-tier institution. Improve health benefits, including mental health care. Provide contributions to retirement accounts for all Postdocs commensurate with other UC employees and vacation time that carries forward and is paid out if unused.
  • Housing. Provide Postdocs with affordable and quality housing near work or housing subsidies appropriate to the local cost of living, in order to reduce climate impacts and promote environmental justice.
  • Relocation Costs. Cover all costs of moving to work at UC.
  • Environmental Sustainability. Provide free access to local public transportation. Implement other practices that promote sustainability and environmental justice, and protect Postdocs against hazards brought on by climate change. Include Postdocs on decision-making bodies for UC sustainability initiatives.
  • Family and Dependent Care. To promote gender equity, provide childcare support and expand paid family leave.
  • International Postdocs. Provide financial aid for visa costs, paid leave for visa and immigration-related appointments, support for moving to the US including campus housing access, and free tax and legal assistance. Improve funding opportunities for scholars from international and underrepresented communities to increase diversity and better support groundbreaking research.
  • Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion. Stop discrimination, harassment, and bullying, including by providing peer-led training on prevention and response options. Improve campus climate, support underrepresented groups, and expand education/training on countering intersectional forms of oppression. Reform campus policing to improve campus safety for all Postdocs, increase UCPD  transparency, and include Postdocs on oversight committees related to policing and campus safety. 

  • Appointment Length. Improve appointment security to match research needs, and to remove the burden and delays of visa renewal for international Postdocs. 

  • Career Development. Increase career development resources, improve effectiveness and accountability of mentors and support rights to secondary mentors. Establish and expand policies for Postdocs to serve as PIs and instructors of record. Ensure that Postdocs receive appropriate academic credit and allow Postdocs to share their work with the public by covering open access publishing fees.

  • Protect Postdocs’ Rights. Guarantee that each Postdoc gets a union orientation and gets enrolled in benefits within 30 days of starting work. Provide the union with full and accurate information regarding Postdoc employment, clarify Postdocs’ rights to bargain over changes to their working conditions, and strengthen Postdocs’ and the union’s ability to enforce their rights.
In addition, we propose maintaining or improving all other existing terms in the CBA not addressed above. To ensure that UC is on proper notice pursuant Article 36B that all Articles are designated, please know that these demands may result in the change to any or all Articles in the Contract and the possible addition of provisions.

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* The only way we'll win on these demands is if Postdocs across all UC campuses get involved -- connecting with colleagues about becoming union members, signing onto these demands, and more. Check below to get involved and an organizer will follow up with you!