by United Campus Workers of Florida (UCW UF)
After decades of not having a voice, and nearly two years of working through a global pandemic, staff and adjuncts of the University of Florida have formed a union. We are proud to announce the creation of United Campus Workers of Florida (UCW UF) as a chapter of the Communications Workers of America (CWA), one of the largest unions in the United States. Now we will be speaking for ourselves. A top 5 university needs a top 5 union to represent the interests of the people who make such an exalted standing possible, the workers. We are seeking greater fairness and equity in all aspects of our jobs, from hiring and retention to benefits and pay.
At a time when inflation and housing costs are on the rise, UCW UF’s first public campaign urges the university to address issues of pay. Some of us never left campus, and the rest of us have returned to campus to offices and in-person instruction, without mask or vaccine mandates to protect us. We never let UF down; we showed up. The 3 percent merit raise does not keep pace with inflation and was not offered to OPS employees at all. UF has stated that providing competitive market and merit-based compensation is a part of their strategy to maintain their status as a top 5 research university; all we are asking is that UF responds to the market and makes good on that pledge, and raises pay to meet the increasing demands of these difficult times. We deserve to be compensated fairly.
We also demand greater transparency across UF as a whole, and a commitment to do away with practices such as fast-tracking politically convenient candidates in the hiring process or wage disparity across units. We should be treated according to our job performance, not on who we know or how powerful we are.
UCW UF is growing daily and calls on the UF administration to voluntarily meet with our union, and looks forward to working with other unions on campus to make UF a top 5 university to work for. UF employees who are not eligible for a different union are eligible to join us. Joining a union is the best way to make UF a better place to work, which would benefit our whole community. If you’re not eligible, you can still encourage your friends to join, follow and boost us on social media, and sign our petition for paid hurricane days for OPS employees.