OrganizeUW News

Calling all faculty! Union Q&A with FAUW (Q&A|FAUW Blog)

Who is OrganizeUW? What happens once TAs, RAs, and sessionals unionize? Could student-faculty relationships be impacted? How can faculty best offer support? As a prof, lecturer, or other faculty member, you may be wondering what unionization would look like at UW and how it could impact you. In our new guest post on the FAUW Blog we work to directly address such questions and concerns. We also list some easy ways you can help, including spreading the word and filling in our quick form to register your support. Click here for the link to the full post!

Have questions for OrganizeUW? Join our weekly drop in!

OrganizeUW hosts a weekly Q&A video call at 1:30pm EST every Tuesday! All TAs, RAs, Sessionals, and other interested UW folks are welcome stop by to discuss the drive, ask questions, find out how to get more involved, or just to say “hello” and meet some organizers. We’d love to have you join us!

COVID-19 health and safety measures for in-person events

Protecting the health and safety of all attendees, organizers, and the broader community is of the utmost importance to OrganizeUW. While our union drive has been almost entirely digital for over a year, we have slowly begun holding more in-person events as public health restrictions allow and best practices shift. This post outlines the current safety procedures in place for organizers and visitors at all in-person events, in accordance with current local and provincial public health restrictions. Please take note of these measures when planning your visit!

Scholarships awarded should be scholarships paid - #WhyNotWaterloo?

The next blog post in our ongoing series tackles the issue of unfair pay practices. This spring, UW announced a TA pay raise from $33.89 to $45/hour. But because it engages in scholarship clawbacks to offset such increases, as a grad TAs you will very likely see zero increase, or even a slight reduction, in your take home pay. But did you know that grads at other universities get to keep their scholarship pay regardless of their work? So #WhyNotWaterloo? This unfair, exploitative, and potentially illegal practice doesn’t happen where TAs have a union. Read on to learn more and find out how you can take action to protect your pay raise from university clawbacks.

UW working conditions creating mental health crisis for graduate students (Story|insideWaterloo)

OrganizeUW calls out the University of Waterloo with new survey data suggesting graduate students are doing much worse now than before the start of the pandemic

Campaign endorsements

**UPDATE APRIL 2021: Grads in the Faculty of Environment (EGSA) and Recreation & Leisure Studies (GARLS) add their voices in support of the growing movement to improve working conditions at UW by forming a union.** Campus organizations continue to pass resolutions to endorse the grassroots campaign to unionize graduate student and sessional workers at the University of Waterloo. Read on to learn more about who has supported us and how we're teaming up to spread the word across campus!

"Scheduled Pauses" & Pandemic Support - Grad Student Experience Survey

UW recently offered a two-day “scheduled pause” to encourage wellness during the pandemic, which made us curious - were you actually able to take some much-needed time off? And have you generally felt well-supported by UW during COVID-19? What do you think UW should be doing to support graduate students, that they're not? Please take our anonymous 5-minute survey and let us know!

How to sign a card (tutorial)

(UPDATED MARCH 2020 – NEW, SIMPLER PROCESS!)

A step-by-step guide to the digital card signing process for our union drive at the University of Waterloo, featuring some helpful screenshots, tips, and answers to common questions. It doesn't take long to sign a card, but there are a few things to be aware of to ensure your card is officially “counted” by the Ontario Labour Board. Read on to learn more!

Guest Post: Migrant Students United (MSU) feedback survey

Guest post from our friends at Migrant Students United, inviting current and former international students to contribute your opinion on the next stage of their work:

“Migrant students & workers! FILL OUT THIS 2 MINUTE SURVEY and help shape collective priorities for change in our work ahead! We won changes to permit and immigration rules, now we’re deciding what to do next. Have your say!”

International doctoral student funding: Quick survey and award restriction info

OrganizeUW is concerned that international doctoral students are facing significant and unexpected reductions to their funding packages in their fourth year due to fine print, unclear offer letters, and apparent departmental funding shortfalls.