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December 15, 2018

UAW gets union nod from Columbia postdocs

October 4, 2018
With 68 % of the vote, more than 2,000 Columbia postdocs chose to unionize with the UAW, which immediately called for the university to begin negotiations for a new contract. (DNY59 / Getty Images)

Postdoctoral researchers at Columbia University have selected a bargaining unit, creating the first postdoctoral union at a private university in the country, officials said.

With 68% of the vote, more than 2,000 Columbia postdocs chose to unionize with the UAW, which immediately called for the university to begin negotiations for a new contract.




“With this historic vote, we’re joining the rising wave of tens of thousands of postdocs and other academic workers forming unions across the country,” Medini Annavajhala, a department of medicine researcher, said in a statement.

Postdocs are researchers who have earned their Ph.D. and typically work under the supervision of a faculty member on research projects such as AIDS, climate change or Alzheimers.

Members said they made the move to negotiate more competitive salaries to meet the city’s high cost of living, and develop stronger sexual harassment protections.




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