Campus News

Update on Collective Bargaining for 2015-2018 Contract

See below for an update (as of October 1, 2015) on bargaining from our UFF Bargaining Team!

After 14 months of negotiations, we are at a critical juncture of bargaining our contract for Fall, 2015 through Summer, 2018. We just scheduled an extra negotiating session to discuss the remaining issues – see below. This will be one of the most important sessions of the year, so please join us on Thursday, October 8th, 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. in CSB 221. To access CSB 221, go through CSB (COS) 201, the room with the double glass doors. Bargaining sessions are public and we encourage everyone to attend, including non-members of UFF. All faculty attending are invited to offer ideas–your help writing a good contract is welcome!

We already have tentatively agreed with the Board of Trustees’ negotiating team on the Preamble plus 24 of the other contract articles. Notable improvements to the existing contract include:

  • We modernized Article 5 – Academic Freedom – to better protect faculty members’ First Amendment rights to free speech and to provide a better “firewall” to protect the university from public outcry when faculty members exercise those rights
  • We streamlined the procedures in Article 13 – Layoff and Recall – including giving faculty greater access to identifying a new position at UCF once a layoff is announced
  • We increased the number of competitive (Type I) sabbaticals by 50% (Article 22 – Leaves and Professional Development Programs

Three large issues remain: salaries, leaves, and tuition benefits for faculty members’ immediate families. Currently, UFF-UCF has proposed a 3.5% salary increase for this year, equally split between across-the-board and merit, and retroactive to August 8th; the BOT team has offered a 2.5% increase, with 1% across-the-board and 1.5% merit, and effective January 8th and non-retroactive. Both sides have proposed paid parental leaves but details have not been worked out. Our UFF-UCF team has proposed expanding free university courses to include transferring benefits to immediate family members, which is becoming common at the other Florida state universities; the BOT team is proposing maintaining the status quo but also indicated that UCF plans to “roll out” a program for all employees in the future. Our position is that the future is now – 57% of UCF’s comparable peer institutions provide tuition benefits to spouses/partners and dependents, as do 75% of UCF’s aspirational peer universities, and UCF will have increasing difficulty attracting and retaining top-notch faculty without a tuition benefit for family members.

Help us bargain for equitable salary increases, paid family leave, expanded tuition benefits, and the rest of our contract by participating in the October 8th bargaining session. And if you are not already a dues-paying member of UFF-UCF, please consider becoming one. We are experiencing a surge in membership and invite you to join us through the UFF-UCF web site. Continued progress at the bargaining table – and elsewhere – depends on your support.