Feb. 18, 2016
UUP negotiators piece together proposals
UUP’s Negotiations Team has entered the next phase of negotiations: turning the list of contract priorities into a set of conceptual proposals to present to the state.
A formal start date for negotiations has not been set. UUP’s five-year contract expires July 1.
The union's 18-member Team, led by Chief Negotiator Philippe Abraham, worked to craft proposals during a three-day session that began Feb. 17. The proposals will come from a list of priorities developed at a meeting in January, after months of data collection through venues such as chapter visits, membership suggestion forms and an online survey.
"Members should have no doubts that their comments and suggestions are the basis of what will be discussed at the bargaining table, said Abraham, statewide VP for professionals"
Team members, like Associate/Deputy Chief Negotiator Mike Smiles and Carolyn Kube, above, broke into subgroups to determine which contract articles should be opened before writing the proposal language. The full Team will review the subgroups' recommendations Feb. 19.
The Negotiations Committee will reconvene in April to review the conceptual proposals written by the Team. According to the UUP Constitution, the Negotiations Committee must accept the proposals before the Team can sit down with the state to hammer out a successor agreement.
What’s next in the process? The Team has a full schedule of meetings into April to prepare specific language to present to the state.
“There is no time frame for when the two sides will meet to exchange proposals,” Abraham said. “But once we do, I can promise that we’ll be ready to negotiate a contract that best reflects the needs of all of our members.”
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