Contract Funding Update

Dear PSU Members,

We know you are anxious to hear what’s happening with our salary increases since the PSU contracts (Unit A-Amherst/Boston and Unit B-Amherst) were ratified this spring. We apologize in advance for the length and complexity of this message; the short story is that we are optimistic that we will see partial increases quite soon, and hopeful that our salary increases will be fully paid in a couple of months.

UMass unions speak to Board of Trustees

On Wednesday, the UMass Board of Trustees met on the UMass Amherst campus.  The professional staff and faculty unions requested time on the agenda to address two issues of concern to our unions and to ask the Board to do the right thing:  fully fund the bargained contracts and freeze student fees.

We wanted to share the speeches that the union representatives gave.  The first is from Eric Berlin, Vice President of the Mass Society  of Professors (the Amherst faculty chapter) and the second is from Amherst PSU Co-Chair elect, Carl Ericson.  We hope you will read them.

Amherst - Notice of Contract Ratification

Professional Staff Union – Unit A
A contract information meeting and ratification vote on the proposed three-year Contract Bargaining Agreement between the Board of Trustees of the University of Massachusetts and the PSU-Unit A/MTA/NEA will be conducted as follows:
Contract Information Meeting:
Thursday, May 14, 2015
12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Campus Center 805-09
Contract Ratification Voting:
Tuesday, May 19, 2015
11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. in Campus Center 802

UMass President Caret ignores contract obligations; unions side with students

For immediate release

Contact: Scott McLennan, Massachusetts Teachers Association, 617.878.8228, 774.253.8142

UMass President Caret ignores contract obligations; unions side with students

Faculty and staff represented by various labor unions working across the University of Massachusetts system are criticizing President Robert Caret and his administration for failing to honor recently ratified contracts and claiming that to pay for negotiated raises, UMass would need to increase student fees.

PSU Presents at Board of Trustees meeting

A quick summary of what happened at the BOT meeting on Wednesday. Sarah Bartlett and Anneta Argyres attended, representing UMB and the PSU over all.  In addition, Randy Phillis and a number of MSP members from UMA were there, as were all the MTA UMass staff.  All told, there were about 12 folks from UMass unions.

Both Randy and Anneta delivered their speeches to a background of the "card people." At the end, we left the 'card people' and a pile of postcards for Chairman Woolridge and Caret.  Below, you can read Anneta's speech.

Delegates Sought for MTA Annual Meeting

Hello PSU-Amherst Members,

We are seeking nominations from members who would like to be delegates to the MTA Annual Assembly of Delegates this year with most of the expenses paid by PSU.  To nominate yourself or someone else, please read below for details. Attending the Annual Assembly will give you insight into the way the MTA works and us a chance to influence policy on issues such as retiree healthcare benefits, etc..  If you are interested in attending, please nominate yourself!

FAIR IS FAIR: We ALL deserve the same cost of living raise!

The last time we checked, there was no discount on the cost of living for PSU members.  So we’ve got to wonder why it is that the University administration is insisting on offering us a smaller cost of living increase than most other state workers got.

During bargaining, the Governor’s office tells state agencies what pay increases it will approve.  This past year Governor Patrick’s administration approved 3% across the board pay increases for all state employee unions with an additional 0.5% pay increase for bargaining units (like ours) that don’t get step increases. 

Amherst - Action Requested

Please join the other campus unions and attend the UMASS President Search Committee's open forum tomorrow (Tuesday, March 10) at 1:30pm in Campus Center 168C.  The committee needs to hear what workers expect from university leadership, especially in light of current negotiations and budget issues.  Past President Caret was not a friend of labor, and we need to let the search committee know that the next President must represent us all!