This week, the Executive Director of UC Labor Relations, Letitia Silas (who makes over $200,000 a year) sent an email to some Postdocs explaining why she thinks you should be happy with UC’s compensation proposal. Letitia attempts to obscure the truth, which is that UC’s proposal is worse than our current contract, or in other words, a pay cut. Here are the facts:

  • Under UC’s proposal, Postdocs would no longer get anniversary date increases and our minimums we would no longer be tied to the NIH scale; the scale that has led to a 45% increase in average Postdoc pay since our first contract in 2010
  • Two of the example Postdocs in the letter would earn less salary under UC’s proposal as compared to the status quo, and the other example would see a minuscule 0.4% increase per year (far less than inflation) (see our breakdown here)
  • UC’s compensation package also imposes higher health care costs on Postdocs as well as parking rate increases

Given that our survey found that 70% of Postdocs are rent-burdened, these proposals are beyond inadequate; they are disrespectful and insulting. In contrast, our compensation proposals would move Postdocs out of rent burden by providing salary increases, lower costs for health benefits, and housing and childcare stipends. UC Labor Relations is trying to trick Postdocs with nice words and cute graphics, but we are not fooled.

Winning compensation that addresses the high cost of living for Postdocs will require all of us standing united. A major obstacle to winning is the university’s bad faith bargaining tactics. Due to UC’s unlawful behavior at the bargaining table — behavior that is preventing us from reaching a fair agreement — we are holding a Strike Authorization Vote from November 8-19 (FAQs here). Keep an eye out for the email with your ballot on Monday and join us in voting YES! And sign up here to help reach out to your colleagues about the vote!In solidarity,

Postdoc Bargaining Team and Alternates

Sarah Arveson, UC Berkeley
Gilbert Bernstein, UC Berkeley
Chris Hart, UC Davis
Adam Schneider, UC Irvine
Zachary Zeidler, UC Los Angeles
Lejla Medzikovic, UC Los Angeles
Brad Barker, UC Merced
Ingrid Padilla Espinosa, UC Merced
Tyler Bell, UC San Diego
Adam Caparco, UC San Diego
Jade Moore, UC San Francisco
Putu Ustriyana, UC San Francisco
Caitlin Taylor, UC Santa Barbara
Heda Agic, UC Santa Barbara
Jacob Porter, UC Santa Cruz
Jasmeet Dhaliwal, UC Santa Cruz

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