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DCLWU Bargaining Update, 2/28/24

Exciting news! Two years after we began organizing, we've finally got our seat at the table! Just to get to this point is a great achievement. It is the result of our collective decision to unionize. 

1. Ground Rules Approved, Negotiation Sessions Scheduled

The BC and the College have agreed on ground rules for negotiating sessions that we'll sign tomorrow.

We have now entered contract negotiations with the College. Our first sessions are scheduled for 2/29 and 3/14 at the HR office downtown.

These negotiation sessions are closed, and only representatives from the College, the BC, and AFSCME can be present. For those curious what these ground rules look like, I've attached the ground rules document that the BC plans to sign tomorrow.

2. Transparency

The BC will be as transparent as we are legally allowed to be. This is an unusual decision in contract negotiations, but we believe that all members of the BU have the right to know what the BC proposes on their behalf and what the College counter-proposes.

There will be give and take, and we expect the College to propose things we would never accept in a contract. The College is not going to accept everything that we propose, and we'll definitely not accept everything the College proposes. The texts of the proposals that we share with you are almost certainly not going to be the texts in the final contract. There will be changes, and we will keep you informed about these changes.

We ask that you trust us to have done our work and to know that we are making strategic decisions, not thoughtless ones, in what we propose and what we accept on your behalf.

Remember: All of us, as members of the BU, will have the final say when the contract comes up for a ratification vote.

3. Communication from the Bargaining Committee During the Negotiations

After each negotiating session, we will send by email a summary of that session. The form of these summaries will vary. These summary emails will also be posted on our Bargaining Blog.

You can track negotiations through our Bargaining Tracker.

The Bargaining Tracker includes:

1. The BC's proposals (divided into individual articles)

2. The College’s counter-proposals

3. Tentative agreements between the BC and the College

4. Other information as needed

We’ll update the Tracker with our contract proposals only after we’ve submitted them to the College. This allows us to not show our hand until we’re ready.

Note: The BC has decided that it will only send groups of proposals to the College before each negotiating session rather than the complete contract. This allows us greater flexibility during the negotiating process.

4. Negotiations Update Meetings

After the first several negotiating sessions, the BC will hold a meeting to discuss how things are going and answer questions. We’ll hold occasional meetings as negotiations continue. We’ll send out a meeting announcement when the time comes.

5. Talk to Us

We want to hear from you! You can email us ( or talk to us in person. Maybe you’re curious about the bargaining process, or maybe you want to know how the BC is doing its work, maybe you want to talk about contract issues, or maybe you just want to connect. We’re here!

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Bargaining Session #1 Summary, 3/1/24

Our first negotiating session with the College on 2/29 concluded with two tentative agreements (TAs) and we will continue negotiating on other articles we proposed. The College introduced 3 proposals


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