The AU administration prides itself on its progressive values in public but treats its staff poorly in private. Please help us fight for a system that will benefit staff, faculty, AND students by donating to our strike fund today!
DISCLAIMER: Section 302 of the LMRDA prohibits employers from giving money or any “thing of value” to a labor union. Employers and their agents* are not eligible to make donations; Local 500 will not accept donations from an employer or their agents.
SEIU Local 500, an affiliate of the Service Employees International Union, is the union representing over 500 professional and non-professional clerical, technical, and academic staff at American University (the AU Staff Union). In the summer of 2022, the AU Staff Union voted 91% in favor of authorizing a ULP strike for the end of August, and now we are turning to our community for support. Our members work tirelessly to provide a top-tier education to thousands of undergraduate and graduate students at AU. Yet, AU staff suffer from low pay, high turnover, and abusive work environments. As a result, many of AU's staff live paycheck to paycheck.
When the staff at American University voted in November 2020 to unionize with SEIU Local 500, our purpose was to improve our working conditions, win fair and equitable wages, and make health insurance affordable. We've approached negotiations with the urgency it demanded, submitting a complete economic proposal by August 2021. Meanwhile, AU has taken every opportunity to frustrate and delay settling a fair contract. After a year and a half of negotiations, American University has doubled-down on frankly offensive proposals (6% over three years - when inflation is nearly 9% in 2022 alone!). In addition, AU has unfairly withheld annual merit increases for 2022 from union-eligible staff, an annual increase that has been in place for over a decade (including in 2021, after negotiations had begun). In July 0f 2022, our union filed an Unfair Labor Practice (ULP) charge against American University for this behavior.
Our strike, going from August 22nd to August 26th, coincides with Fall Move-In for Main Campus and the First Week of Classes at the Washington College of Law. We know that AU won't listen to us at the bargaining table or the National Labor Relations Board - but they will listen to us in the streets.
* An agent of the employer would be anyone who is authorized to act on the employer's behalf (including the authority to spend the employer's funds on the donation). It would also include individuals donating to the strike fund from their personal finances (e.g., not from employer funds) if that person is a manager, holds a position where they act on the employer's behalf regarding labor relations, has job responsibilities to maintain relationships with unions or affiliated trusts, or is acting indirectly for the employer.