The primary responsibility of the bargaining committee is to negotiate an initial collective bargaining agreement with the WPI administration’s team. Election to the committee obligates each member to represent and fight for the best possible contract for all members of the bargaining unit.

The committee will be trained and assisted by experienced negotiators from the Union who will also participate in the negotiations with the institute. See below for specific responsibilities.

  • Develop initial bargaining goals for ratification by union supporters across campus, using surveys, other relevant contracts, membership feedback from other sources, etc.
  • After ratification of initial bargaining goals, develop and present contract language proposals to the WPI administration’s bargaining team for negotiation.
  • Attend negotiating sessions with the admins and Union internal caucuses or meetings in order to advance our bargaining agenda.
  • Assess, analyze and respond to the institute’s bargaining proposals and develop union counter proposals.
  • Keep the membership and allies informed and educated about the negotiations and the process.
  • Coordinate with the organizing committee, including attending the organizing committee meetings weekly and going to various working groups, and other activists on a strategic campaign to win a strong contract that can be recommended for ratification.
  • Work with department leaders to help mobilize workers as necessary to help keep membership engaged as we negotiate our agreement.
  • Make a recommendation to the membership on whether to approve a contract or take other actions (e.g. a vote to authorize the committee to call for strike action if necessary).

Committee members should assume that the time commitment will be significant. Note that the schedule of bargaining itself is subject to negotiation with the WPI administration’s bargaining team.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a union?

What does the elections committee do?

What is the difference between the Graduate Student Government (GSG) and a union?

What is the bargaining committee?

Who is eligible to run for bargaining committee?

What do I have to do as part of the bargaining committee? 

What happens if less than 5 people run for the bargaining committee?

Bargaining Committee Responsibilities