On Valentine’s Day, 2014, when the last few ballots were counted by the State Labor Board, a victory was announced: UNH Lecturers United-AAUP had won recognition as the bargaining agent for all full-time lecturers at UNH: After many months of planning, one-on-one conversations, and countless meetings, UNHLU was handed a resounding 141-23 victory.
Getting there, however, was an arduous process. In 2013, a group of lecturers, many of whom had previously served on the Lecturers Council, began to discuss some of the problems that had emerged at UNH which could only be resolved through the legally binding foundation that UNHLU could negotiate. With training and advice from the national AAUP, they learned how to organize an effective vote and mobilize volunteer lecturers to talk with other lecturers in their offices. They had a message and a vision for a better future, one which would offer job security, better salaries, legal protections against workplace injustices and a voice in the governance of UNH. They also held several open meetings, inviting all lecturers to attend and have their say and stay informed. In the fall of 2013 this work caught the attention of media outlets.
The UNHLU Executive Committee has been meeting regularly since the spring of 2014 to write the chapter bylaws, consult on negotiations, and attend to other union business. Your continued support motivated many throughout the negotiation process and strengthened the UNHLU position at the bargaining table. Negotiations began with the administration on June 23, 2014, and proceeded rapidly and cordially.
In August of 2015, we concluded negotiating and signed our first collective bargaining agreement (CBA). This important document legally codifies the employment practices, salaries, benefits and other protections negotiated at the table. This CBA was ratified by UNH Lecturers United-AAUP members and the USNH Board of Trustees.
Some highlights of this contract are: