Nominations for bargaining committee elections OPEN NOW! 4 paid positions

Dear GEO Members,

Next semester negotiations will commence on a new collective bargaining agreement; the contract between GEO/UAW2322 and the University that governs the terms and conditions of your employment. GEO is a democratically run organization and a successful contract campaign depends on your participation. Stewards have been out in all of the departments having dialogues with you about the new contract one on one and look out for an online survey within the next few weeks. We now need to elect a bargaining committee to coordinate & lead this campaign.

There are FOUR PAID POSITIONS and an unlimited number of unpaid & alternate positions on the committee. See below for more information and the call for nominations.

The Bargaining Committee:

The bargaining committee will consists of the four elected bargaining members, alternate members, and the GEO staff. The bargaining committee members will elect its chief and co-chief negotiators. All members of the bargaining committee are to serve throughout the duration of a contract negotiation and will not need to be re-elected in the event that contract negotiations is extended beyond a year. Membership will have ultimate oversight over the bargaining committee and the committee answers to and is in service to the membership. The bargaining committee’s responsibility is to assess the needs of the membership prior to negotiations, and made transparent regularly via the GEO website.

Nominations are now open for the GEO bargaining committee. The positions are listed below:

Bargaining Research & Proposal Coordinators (2) (10 hr. contract)
Bargaining Organizing & Mobilization Coordinators (2) (10 hr. contract)
Bargaining Committee At-Large members (5 unpaid & unlimited alternate
volunteer positions)

Call for GEO Bargaining positions

Job description (pick A or B in your nomination)

Bargaining Research & Proposal Coordinators (2 positions):

The two Bargaining Research & Proposal Coordinators will focus on researching, drafting, discussing, and writing our contract proposals for negotiations. These elected members will also help argue for our proposals at the bargaining table with administration. Paid GEO Bargaining team members are expected to make Bargaining-related trainings and meetings that have been scheduled (around team members’ availability). These elected members will also serve as the liaison between the negotiating/research group, and will be in regular communication with the existing listserv of members who have signed up to be active on this committee and the bargaining committee.


B) Bargaining Organizing & Mobilization Coordinators (2 positions):
The two Bargaining Organizing & Mobilization Coordinators will focus on organizing members around their issues/concerns. These elected members are responsible for involving more members in the bargaining process and recruiting members to speak at the bargaining table (to administration)
and for actions around contract negotiations. Paid GEO Bargaining team members are expected to make Bargaining-related trainings and meetings that have been scheduled (around team members’ availability). These elected members will also serve as the liaison between the campaigning/organizing group and will be in regular communication with stewards, the existing listserv of members who have signed up to be active on this committee, and the bargaining committee.

Any full member in good standing may nominate themselves or another member in good standing for any of these positions. Nominations and candidate statements are due by 11:59PM on November 30th and the election will be held at the membership meeting on December 8th (with advance voting earlier that week) All positions begin duties in January 2017. The four paid coordinator positions are fully benefitted, 10/hours per week GEO jobs and shall continue through the summer and through the end of the semester in which negotiations conclude.

If you wish to be a Bargaining Committee At-Large member (5 unpaid & unlimited alternate volunteer positions) you may nominate yourself at the membership meeting on December 8. If you are unable to attend that meeting, you may send your nomination & a short statement to to be read at the meeting.

GEO’s PURPOSE (GEO Bylaws article 2)

A. GEO is a democratic union that aims to organize and represent all graduate employees at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst over issues related to their employment and the improvement of their working conditions. GEO supports the struggle of all workers, and stands in
solidarity with other unions and progressive organizations in their fights for social and economic justice.

B. GEO is authorized to negotiate on the employment practices and policies of the University as they relate to graduate employees including, but not limited to, affirmative action; appointment and
reappointment process; childcare; contract length; disciplinary policy and codes of conduct; dues check-off and agency fee; evaluations; fee waivers; grievance and arbitration; health and safety, including health benefits and sick leave; hours of work and workload; job descriptions, retrenchment, salary, seniority, sexual harassment, and training. GEO is not authorized to negotiate on academic practices and policies as they relate to graduate employees in their simultaneous capacity as students,
such as salary maximums or limitations on employee’s rights to choose the time and manner of their work.

C. GEO follows an equal opportunity policy and employs personnel and serves its members without regard to race, creed, color, ethnicity, national origin, religion, sex, sexuality, sexual orientation, gender expression, age, physical or mental ability, HIV status, political affiliation or belief, citizenship, veteran status, military obligations, and marital or relationship status. GEO Strives to be an inclusive union and build a broad based unity among its members. It will actively seek to promote the participation and engagement of oppressed groups and underrepresented work sites at all levels of the union.

Nomination Process:

Nominate yourself or someone else for any of the above positions via email to the Steering Committee at Nominations are due by 11:59pm November 30, 2016.

If you have any questions regarding the elections or nominations process, please do not hesitate to email the Elections Committee at

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