What Are We – Chopped Liver?

Hello All,

Our bargaining session with OUS on Monday and Tuesday (7/22 & 23) will be significant for two reasons. It will be our first time this year working with a state mediator to try to reach a settlement. And it will be our first bargaining session since DAS workers settled their contract with the state. That happened early yesterday morning (7/18). Here’s where DAS ended up on the major issues:

Health Insurance

  • Maintain the current 5% premium share. Provide a pathway to a 3% premium share in 2015.
  • Maintain the low-wage worker and part-time worker healthcare subsidies.


  • 1.5% wage increase for all on 12/1/13.
  • 2.0% wage increase for all on 12/1/14.

Step Increases

  • Two full steps for those who are eligible. No more freeze or delay.

Furlough Days

  • No more furlough days.

Contracting Out, Layoff Bumping Rights, & Daily Overtime

  • No loss of benefits or protections in these areas.

That doesn’t sound anything like what OUS is offering us, does it? Why does OUS need to double our health insurance premium cost, chisel us on wages and steps, and insist that we give up critical and long-standing job protections? Why can’t they make us a reasonable proposal – a proposal like the DAS settlement? What are we – chopped liver?

Don’t forget, though, that the state only made this contract offer to the DAS workers after weeks of rallies, job actions, strike pledges, and a strike authorization vote. OUS won’t do the right thing either without more “encouragement” from us.

Help your bargaining team out by telling President Gottfredson (pres@uoregon.edu and 6-3036) and Chancellor Melody Rose (Melody_Rose@ous.edu and (503) 725-5707) that you expect a reasonable proposal – something very much like the DAS settlement. And please send your message now as we head into mediation. It will make a real difference.

It’s already too late for OUS to show that they respect us and truly value our work. But it’s not too late for us to win a good contract from them. We can do that if we stand up and stick together.

Kurt Willcox

UO Classified Workers SEIU SubLocal 085