As Educational Student Employees, we won the right last year to collectively bargain for our working conditions. Our counterparts who do similar work with different job titles (Operational Student Employees) are currently fighting for their own recognition from Western. To help support our student worker peers, take 30 seconds and sign in “PRO” to support the bill that will require Western by law to recognize their collective bargaining rights. To be very clear: OSE work is just as important to Western’s operations as ours, and as a united body of Western Academic Workers United we believe that WWU can and MUST immediately voluntarily recognize OSEs and start bargaining with them as well – regardless of there being a “statutory framework” in place. 

At Monday’s bargaining session, educational student employees shared powerful testimony about their experiences with WWU’s inadequate Title IX process, the barriers that international student workers face, and the struggle to get accommodations as student employees. These testimonies had a huge impact on the room, and forced WWU’s admin to realize there are serious consequences and real failures when it comes to protecting us as student workers. 

During the session, we talked through 11 different contract articles with WWU. And we are so so close to reaching a tentative agreement for housing and travel articles. Which would enshrine graduate student worker’s access to on-campus housing and ensure a timeline for travel reimbursements within 30 days (an EXTREMELY common problem among ESEs who have to travel for their jobs). 

Want to hear what Western says their budget is? RSVP HERE to come be a body in the room at next week’s bargaining session, where WWU admin will be presenting on their budget. It will take place on Monday, 1/29 in Viking Union 565 and you can come be in the room for any amount of time between 11am & 5pm. In addition to hearing about Western’s budget, we’re presenting counter articles on important issues including workload, health and safety, and discipline and dismissal. Let’s keep up the pressure and keep showing up! 

Solidarity from your WAWU Bargaining Committee,

Ally Wehrle, Graduate TA

Ben Workman Smith, Graduate TA

David Cummins, Graduate RA/TA

Erin Grimes, Graduate TA

Erin Magarro, Library Tutor/Ethnic Student Center

Ev Coit, Graduate TA

Gabe Wong, Associated Students Peer Advisor

Jaime Blais, Graduate RA/TA

Josh Kinney, Business Management Faculty Assistant

Jude Ziliak, Academic Advising and Student Achievement Center Peer Advisor

Lexy Aydelotte, Graduate TA

Lydia Henderson, Graduate TA

Mickey Jolliff, Graduate RA/TA

Mason Nicholas, Student Technology Center Computer Assistant

Theo Hytopoulos, Computer Science Faculty Assistant

Valerie Campbell, Financial Aid Peer Advisor