The UC Davis water tower during a storm.

UC Davis Strike Updates and Support

We will keep updating this page to ensure the latest guidance is being provided (last updated 11/30/22).

Strike Related Announcements 

At this time, the United Automobile, Aerospace and Agricultural Implement Workers of America (UAW) members have voted to authorize the union to begin a strike on Monday, November 14 if negotiations fail.  These bargaining units consist of Postdoctoral Scholars, Academic Researchers, Academic Student Employees (ASEs - TAs/Readers/Tutors), and Graduate Student Researchers (including some graduate students on training grants and external fellowships).

The following dropdown menu contains strike-related guidance and correspondence from leadership.  Additional FAQs are answered below.  Please check this page regularly as it will continue to be updated.

  • P&EVC Croughan & Academic Senate Chair Palazoglu Extension of P/NP ad S/U Deadlines – Nov. 29, 2022

  • Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor Mary Croughan and Davis Division of the Academic Senate Chair Ahmet Palazoglu shared this important update to all undergraduate and graduate students regarding the UC Davis Academic Senate approval to extend the Passed/Not Passed and Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory deadlines. 

     

  • UCOP Leadership – Negotiated Agreements for Postdocs and Academic Researchers – Nov. 29, 2022

  • UCOP issued this update regarding Postdoctoral Scholars and Academic Researchers.  UC has reached tentative agreements with UAW on new five-year contracts for all UC Postdoctoral Scholars and Academic Researchers.  The update outlines highlights agreed terms.  

  • Academic Senate Chair Palazoglu – UC Davis Division Update: Strike Flexibilities & Guidance  – Nov. 29, 2022

  • Davis Division of the Academic Senate Chair Ahmet Palazoglu issued this update to all UC Davis Academic Senate and Academic Federation faculty on strike-related actions. The Academic Senate created the Strike Flexibilities and Guidance webpage as an additional resource outlining academic policy under Davis Division authority.

    One important highlight from this update is that the Executive Council voted to extend the Passed/Not Passed (P/NP) and Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory (S/U) deadlines to the last day of instruction for fall quarter, December 2, 2022. 

  • UC Systemwide Academic Senate Leadership –  Guidance on Evaluating Academic Progress in the Current Term – Nov. 28, 2022

  • Academic Council Chair Susan Cochran and Vice Chair James Steintrager issued this guidance regarding undergraduate coursework grading, graduate student grading, and alternate grading options. 

  • UCOP Leadership – Frequently Asked Questions about UC-UAW Negotiations – Nov. 18, 2022

  • In this document, UCOP provides answers to frequently asked questions regarding key issues in UC-UAW negotiations.

  • PEVP Brown – University’s Latest Offers, Update on Negotiations, and Outstanding Areas of Disagreement – Nov. 15, 2022

  • In this letter, UCOP Provost and Executive Vice President Michael Brown writes to inform faculty of the University’s latest offers, updates on negotiations, and to provide information on the outstanding areas of disagreement.

  • UCOP Leadership – UCOP’s Enhanced Offer to UAW – Nov. 15, 2022

  • UCOP openly released this summary of the enhancements to UAW and proposes mediation to facilitate agreements. 

  • PEVP Brown – UC defends its contract offer in labor talks to avert a strike – Nov. 12, 2022

  • In this letter to the editor at the LA Times, UCOP Provost and Executive Vice President Michael Brown clarified that the University of California has actively been working with UAW to bargain increased salaries.

  • UC Systemwide Academic Senate Leadership – UAW Strike Guidance – Nov. 10, 2022

  • This message by Academic Council Chair Susan Cochran and Vice Chair James Steintrager was sent to all Academic Senate division chairs and UC Faculty on behalf of Vice Provost Douglas Haynes. 

    Please read the entire message here

  • VP & Dean Marx – Message to all UC Davis Students – Nov. 10, 2022

  • Interim Vice Provost and Dean for Undergraduate Education John Marx sent this message to all UC Davis undergraduate students informing them of the strike scheduled to start Monday, November 14, 2022.  He highlights that students should, "attend class as scheduled on Monday and for the duration of the strike."

    Please read the entire message here

  • UC PEVP Brown – Highlights of UC's Proposals for Each Bargaining Unit – Nov. 9, 2022

  • This message was sent by UCOP Provost and Executive Vice President Michael Brown with an update on offers for each UAW bargaining unit (postdoctoral scholars, academic student employees, graduate student researchers, and academic researchers). 

    Please read the entire message here

  • PEVC Croughan – UAW Strike Preparation Information for Faculty – Nov. 9, 2022

  • This message was sent to all Academic Senate and Academic Federation faculty from Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor Mary Croughan.  It outlines the continuity of instruction/education, research, and animal care during the UAW strike.  Updates and answers to frequently asked questions will be posted on here on this webpage.

    Please read the entire message here

  • PEVC Croughan UAW Bargaining Update – Nov. 4, 2022

  • Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor Mary Croughan shared this message with all Academic Senate and Academic Federation faculty.  In it, PEVC Croughan forwards UCOP Provost and Executive Vice President Michael Brown's message regarding the UAW bargaining status and highlights that, "it is of the utmost importance that supervisory and managerial employees refrain from engaging in conduct that would constitute interfering with the employees’ rights to engage in union activity."  

    "This includes, but is not limited to, asking them about their union activity, including whether they intend to strike, making statements to discourage or deter their union activity, including participation in the strike, monitoring their union activities, creating more onerous working conditions, or otherwise discriminating or retaliating against them because of their union activities or support for the union." 

    Please read the entire message here

Frequently Asked Questions 

Strike Support

  • Who can I contact for strike support? 
  • For questions – especially those that college/school or departmental resources may not be able to resolve – please contact the Academic Affairs team at strikequestions@ucdavis.edu.  Responses can be expected within one business day.

General Guidance 

  • Are there any guidelines on what is or isn't permissible as a supervisor/manager?
  • Guidelines for Supervisors/Managers (including principal investigators) Permissible Actions
    Impermissible Actions to Avoid

    • Do take lawful steps to ensure safety and security at University campuses and properties.  Report misconduct or threats to safety and security.

    • Do take lawful steps to ensure unobstructed entrances and exits.

    • Do take lawful steps to ensure continuity of operations.  Do plan for potential disruption of ongoing research as a result of a strike.  Plans for the preservation of experimental materials and the like must be carefully prepared.

    • Do refer employees to their union if they have questions regarding union membership, union activities, and potential strike activity.

    • Do plan for supporting student academic progress, including alternate methods of instructional delivery and educational continuity.

    • Do stay in close contact with your local Labor Relations and Academic Personnel offices and promptly report threats to safety and security, violence, or other misconduct or dangerous circumstances.

     

    Do not photograph, video, or generally “monitor” employees striking activity for reasons unrelated to ensuring safety, security, and access.  This includes refraining from monitoring or perusing employees’ social media.

    Do not survey or communicate with employees, including Senate Faculty, Unit 18 faculty, UAW unit members, and other employees, regarding their intention to participate in or support a strike. Such communication can be found to violate employee rights.

    Do not make statements to employees intended to elicit a response concerning their union activity or union sympathies.

    Avoid tweets and comments on social media (encouraging or discouraging employees’ protected activities, including strike activity) which purport to be official statements on behalf of the University.

    Do not ask employees about their protected activities, their union sympathies nor the protected activities/union sympathies of others.  Protected activity includes strikes and protests concerning terms and conditions of employment or bargaining.

    Do not discipline, discharge, reprimand, or otherwise take adverse action against employees for protected activity, including lawful strike activity.

    Do not deal directly, solicit grievances, or make promises to employees, including Senate and Unit 18 faculty and student employees, based on their participation/non-participation in, or support/non-support, for a strike.

  • Will workers who choose to strike be paid as if they performed work?
  • No.  We value our employees and fully respect represented employees’ right to engage in protected activity, including a lawful strike.  However, since striking employees are, by definition, not working, they are not eligible to receive their regular pay.  Additionally, federal guidelines indicate that we are not able to pay employees on federal grants if they are not working.  Employees who wish to receive their regular pay, may perform their work during this time.
  • May I ask who intends to walk out in support of the labor action?
  • No. It is not appropriate to ask anyone if they will be participating.  Commenting on participation in the strike can be construed as interference or retaliation.  If you have specific performance or personnel concerns, please contact Academic Affairs at strikequestions@ucdavis.edu.  Responses can be expected within one business day.
  • How long is the work stoppage expected to continue?
  • We are unable to predict the duration of the work stoppage.  The University of California will continue to negotiate with the UAWs leadership in good faith to reach an agreement on contract terms, and we will provide updates and additional guidance as needed.

    Academic Student Employees, Graduate Student Researchers, Postdoctoral Scholars, and Academic Researchers are valuable members of the UC Davis community, and we look forward to reaching an agreement.  We appreciate your commitment to ensure that we can continue to advance our critical teaching and research missions during this challenging time.

  • Which workers may strike?
  • Workers in four bargaining units represented by the UAW:
    (1) Academic Student Employees (ASEs) (Teaching Assistants (TAs)/Associates, Readers, Tutors);
    (2) Postdoctoral Scholars;
    (3) Academic Researchers (Specialists, Project Scientists, Professional Researchers); and
    (4) Graduate Student Researchers (including some on training grants and external fellowships).
  • Can I ask any of these workers about their intention to strike?
  • No.  Do not discuss the potential strike action or solicit any individual worker’s intention.
  • Can GSR’s continue to get paid if they are absent? What if they are on federal funding?
  • GSR’s will not be paid if they elect to strike.  Additionally, if federal grant funding is involved, and if employees do not fulfill their project responsibilities or meet the regular effort that would be reported, then the time not worked cannot be charged to sponsored funds.
  • What if one of these workers indicates they want to participate in a strike action while traveling on University business?
  • The PI can ask the worker if they are planning on participating in the conference, for whatever reason, not necessarily regarding the strike.  If they indicate they will not, then the PI can consider inviting someone else who will attend and benefit from the learning opportunity, and allocating the resources (travel/conference fees) to the use as they were intended.
  • What should supervisors of these workers (including PIs) do at this time?
  • Consider the possibility that progress on research projects may be delayed.  If you have questions about progress on research projects, contact Sponsored Programs.
  • Can the represented worker ask to use vacation during the strike?
  • Yes, and we recommend you review requests for vacation as you would for any vacation requests so that you maintain consistency.  For example, if you generally consider approvals of vacation requests based on unit needs and workload, then use with that approach.  Or if you are fairly flexible on approving vacation, then use that approach.
  • What do I do if an employee fills out their timesheet as if they were working, but I know the employee was participating in the strike and not working?
  • If you know that the employee has entered false information on their timesheet, you should not approve it.  You should return it to the employee and ask them to correct it to reflect their actual work performed.
  • Should I tell employees who participated in the strike to fill out their timesheet as PPO or vacation?
  • No.  They should mark their timesheets as Leave Without Pay (“LWOP”).
  • How do we figure out how to pay these represented workers who don't show up during the strike?
  • There are ongoing discussions (including UC Office of the President Labor Relations and UC Path colleagues) about how this can be accomplished within current timekeeping and payroll systems.  There are many ways in which pay to the affected folks are handled at different campuses, so there will not be a one size fits all solution.  As solutions are reached we will be communicating those appropriately. 
  • As an international student, will my participation in the strike have any negative impact on my immigration or visa status? 
  • You may participate in the strike without any impact to your visa or immigration status so long as you are participating lawfully and peacefully. 
  • How will the strike affect deliveries to campus?
  • United Parcel Service (UPS) has informed UC that its delivery drivers will not cross the picket line of striking academic workers. This could result in disruption of UPS deliveries to the campus and UC Davis Health. For further information and updates about UPS and campus deliveries, contact Supply Chain Management.

    Beginning Monday, November 21, UPS will deliver perishable shipments to the Hopkins Services Complex. Mail Services will then deliver those perishable items to campus and UC Davis Health departments along with their regular mail delivery. When placing orders for perishable, dry ice or other urgent deliveries, we recommend checking with the supplier as to which delivery provider they will be utilizing to determine if an alternate provider should be requested.

    Departments with other urgent deliveries can contact UPS directly at 1-800-742-5877 with their tracking number and request that the items be delivered to Mail Services at 615 Hopkins Road. Customers will be alerted by email once their shipments have been delivered to Mail Services and may pick them up during normal will call hours of 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 1 to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, excluding holidays.

    All other UPS shipments will be delivered by UPS at the conclusion of the strike. FedEx deliveries are not affected by the strike.

Instructional Impacts 

  • What impacts are anticipated? 
  • We anticipate a period of unknown duration where some of these workers will not fulfill their job duties.  These duties include but are not limited to: teaching lectures, labs, and discussion sections; grading submitted work and entering/maintaining grades; tutoring; supplemental instruction; research; outreach; program administration; and other duties assigned.

  • What are the rights and responsibilities of faculty with respect to continuity of instruction?
  • Faculty have the right under HEERA to engage in concerted activity, including respecting the UAW picket line.  Faculty also have an obligation under the APM to deliver the curriculum.  Given that, faculty should exercise discretion about managing their courses and making changes necessitated by circumstances, doing their best to minimize the impact on enrolled students. 

    Consider temporarily pivoting to alternative instructional modalities and/or employing non-traditional learning assignments.  Per existing policy of the Committee on Courses of Instruction, in-person courses may conduct up to ten contact hours per quarter in a virtual manner (without requiring the course to be approved as a hybrid or virtual course).  Contact hours are defined as time when instructors are presenting to or interacting with students, e.g., lecture, laboratory, discussion.  Contact hours do not include office hours. Learn about COCI policy and procedures here.
  • What is expected of chairs, faculty members, and other instructors?
  • Chairs are responsible for working with college/school leadership and educators to ensure instructional and research continuity.  Educators are expected to maintain instructional activities for all students.  Chairs will work with instructors who need support or guidance in implementing continuity plans.
  • Can department chairs hire readers to help with grading?
  • Yes, department chairs may elect to hire readers to help with grading needs during the strike.
  • Can departments request central funding to hire additional readers? 
  • There is no central funding allocated for this purpose, at this time.  The administration will work with affected units on this issue should the strike last longer than is currently anticipated.
  • What should an instructor of record do at this time?
  • If you currently supervise one or more ASEs (TAs/Readers/Tutors) in an instructional setting, please plan ahead for the possibility of a strike.  Students will expect you to be the authority on how the course will proceed.  The specific actions you take will depend on different circumstances, but may include the following:

     • Notify your students of the possibility of a strike, how they could be impacted, and steps you will take in the event of a strike.  Instruction should not be cancelled because of the strike.

     •
    Maintain clear and frequent communication with your students.  Remind them that you will be the main point of contact during the strike, and ensure they know how to reach you. 

     • Focus on maintaining course continuity.  Among these priorities should be preserving each student’s access to the course and materials.

     • Identify any aspects of the course that may be postponed, abbreviated, or omitted, and revise your lesson planning and grading rubric accordingly.  Consider engaging your students in making these revisions and be transparent and reasonable with your new expectations.

     • Examine the work currently being done by each ASE to understand its stage, how it might be disrupted, and the specific steps you can take to mitigate disruption if it happens.

     • Ensure you have access to ASE lesson plans, student grades, graded materials, and submitted work that has not yet been graded.

     • If grading will be delayed, ask students to maintain copies of submitted work and post timely sample solutions for them to review.

     • Within the limits of the ASE appointment letters, consider reassigning work among ASEs if some choose to work during the strike while others do not. 

  • How do I prepare for a work stoppage impacting my course or research program? 
  • (1) Ensure that you have up-to-date access to all course materials and grade data for your courses in Canvas.
    (2) Develop or modify existing research continuity plans to cover labs, including ensuring lab safety and securing and maintaining research materials and data.  Be prepared to implement continuity plans as needed.
  • What about graduate courses?
  • Graduate instruction should continue.  Graduate students are students regardless of their employment status with the university and should continue to participate in university activities during the strike.  Graduate classes and the evaluation of graduate student academic progress for grades and credit should continue as normal.

  • Can I expect graduate students to complete coursework, including independent study?
  • Students enrolled in courses, independent study or otherwise, should continue to do the activities associated with those courses and be graded in response to their academic progress regardless of employment or strike participation.  Faculty may still communicate with striking students regarding academic activities.
  • Can we give U grades for 299 units if students completely stop research activities?
  • 299 units are flexible units (1-12) associated with a S/U graded course that represents the academic value of the research graduate students conduct as a requirement for their degree.

    The research work performed by graduate students employed as GSRs typically has a lot of overlap with the work they need to perform to receive a satisfactory grade in their research units.  A GSR not engaging in research work because of the strike will likely not make academic progress in their 299 units during that time.  However, since we are in week eight of the quarter, it would stand to reason that if performance in these units has been satisfactory so far this quarter, inactivity for a few days should not drastically affect that assessment.

    Assessment and grading is a faculty prerogative.  The assessment of student performance in any course can only be based on academic criteria that is consistently applied to all students.

  • If some TAs want to work and others do not, can I reallocate work to the available TAs?
  • Potentially, yes, within limits.  TA duties are outlined in the work agreements completed and signed by departments/faculty and TAs at the beginning of the quarter.  Duties must fall within the established work agreements.  Faculty must also be cognizant of the number of hours of the TA appointment and cannot assign work that would exceed the appointment hours outlined in the agreements.  Faculty must also honor TAs’ right to strike and cannot be perceived as exerting any pressure on TAs with respect to the strike.

  • What if a TA wants to add information about the strike to Canvas?
  • Be consistent with what you allow to be posted to Canvas.  If you have not allowed non-academic related postings, then you can be clear that information about the strike cannot be posted.  If you have allowed non-academic information to be posted, then please contact Academic Affairs at strikequestions@ucdavis.edu for further guidance.  Responses can be expected within one business day.

    For any questions additional questions, please email strikequestions@ucdavis.edu.  Questions sent to this email address will be responded to within one business day