Columbia Must Treat Workers Right!

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It’s no secret that Columbia can afford to treat its workers fairly. The University has a reported endowment of $10 Billion and charged undergraduate students nearly $55,000 in tuition for the 2017-2018 academic year.

Yet, the University is wasting resources on fighting its own workers. In 2016, eight women who care for students at the university health clinic joined the healthcare workers’ union, 1199SEIU. Today, they still don’t have a contract. Columbia seems intent on fighting these women at every turn, refusing to agree to affordable healthcare for them and their families, fair wages and a health and safety committee to address harmful fumes in the clinic. Columbia won’t even agree to a sexual harassment provision within the contract! Given our increasing understanding about the prevalence of sexual violence and misconduct across industries, this refusal seems particularly alarming.

The student clinic employees aren’t the only workers that Columbia is mistreating. According to UAW Local 2110, they are also refusing to bargain with the graduate student workers who voted to join the union over three years ago.

Columbia is showing an alarming pattern of disrespecting workers’ democratic right to form a union. We call on Columbia to stop pouring resources into fighting its own workers and bargain fairly with the healthcare workers at the student health clinic and the graduate workers represented by 2110. Enough is enough!



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