Over 3,600 professional staff are saying enough is enough, with 1,100 signing on to file a petition to join SEIU Local 199. After the regents passed a wage increase of 4.5%, which I'm absolutely sure they thought was exceedingly generous on their part, the staff at UI decided it was time to take action.
UI research scientist Gerene Denning said:
"What I found was sometimes it was very hard to get the P&S staff perspective sort of heard, and I think that's part of what a union does for you," said Denning, who has been a UI professional and scientific staff member for about 25 years. "It kind of gives you an organization through which you and your peers could sort of have a voice in things."The average pay for these staffers at UI is $50,000 per year, which is very poor indeed when you consider that the jobs often require advanced degrees, even PhDs, and that senior administrative staff make well over six-figures for largely managerial duties.
The bottom line is that the big-money alums could care less about worker's wages, and that attitude carries over throughout the senior administration. It is not a priority unless the workers make it a priority. The only way to effect that change is to organize. The alternative is to watch your paycheck degrade vís-a-vís inflation while some fat-cat slaps his WASP last name on another building that no one needs.
Read more here and here.