Subject: Collective Bargaining for U Maryland
Date: Sat, 18 Nov 2000 08:08:18 GMT
From: Kathlene A Mcdonald <>
Posted: December 14, 2000

Hello, all -
As part of our fledgling organizing campaign at the U of Maryland, we are
 currently engaged in a legislative struggle to get graduate student
 employees covered under state collective bargaining laws.  And we need
 your help!

Here's the deal - a few years back, MD passed a law that gave collective
bargaining rights to all state employees *except* University
employees (yes, it's incredibly exclusionary and unfair).  In the next
legislative session, the Governor will be pushing through a bill that
gives collective bargaining rights to *some* University workers.  As it
stands at the moment, grad students are not covered in this new bill,
although the Governor has said he is "open to discussion" on the
issue.  So we are conducting a massive letter-writing campaign to get grad
student workers covered in this bill.  AFT is meeting with the gov's staff
 on December 7th, so time is of the utmost importance.  If you could print
 out the enclosed letter, sign it, and mail it ASAP, it would be a HUGE
 help to us.  And if you're incredibly motivated, print out a few copies
 and get your friends and co-workers to sign.  Any questions, feel free to
 e-mail me.

Thanks in advance for your help.
In solidarity,
 Kathy McDonald

[please include your dept. address here]

Governor Parris N. Glendening
State House
Annapolis, MD 21401

Dear Governor Glendening:

On behalf of graduate students at the University of Maryland, College
Park, I write to encourage you to include graduate student employees in
the forthcoming bill to grant Collective Bargaining to State Personnel in
Higher Education.  State governments in California, Michigan, Wisconsin,
Oregon, Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey, Iowa, Kansas, Florida, and
 Illinois have recognized graduate student employees as state employees,
and the National Labor Relations Board recently ruled that graduate
students who work as research and teaching assistants at private colleges
 and universities have the right to form unions and bargain
collectively.  I urge you to follow these examples and extend collective
bargaining rights to the thousands of graduate student employees who work
to provide and support high quality education for undergraduates at the
University of Maryland.

 The nature of graduate education has changed drastically within the past
 several decades.  While at one time, graduate students served as
 apprentices to advanced faculty, this is no longer the case.  In today's
 universities, many graduate students have full responsibility for teaching
undergraduate courses, while others run labs and discussion sections,
 conduct research, and do administrative work.  Studies indicate that at
major public research universities, graduate student employees provide
 over 50% of undergraduate student contact.  Clearly, graduate student
labor helps to keep the University running smoothly and effectively.  As
 you take the step to ensure that other University employees have
collective bargaining rights, I urge you not to exclude the many graduate
 student employees who help make the University of Maryland the quality
  institution that it is.


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