Frequently Asked Questions
What if my advisor/faculty retaliates, e.g. I’m not awarded grants, etc?
Our right to form a union is legally protected, and we are affiliated with the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), which has legal resources and knowledge to ensure that right is upheld. Having a union can benefit your relationship with your advisor/faculty because you don’t have to negotiate one-on-one. Complaints can be addressed through the union.
Why should I care? I already make enough money and I’m worried with a union my stipend would go down.
Would I lose money because I’d be forced to pay dues?
What is collective bargaining?
Would I be at risk for joining or supporting a union as an international student or non-U.S. citizen?
As an international student you are afforded all of the protections U.S. citizens have when it comes to organizing and unionizing. International graduate student workers have played a central role in organizing and running unions at more than 60 university campuses across the US. Your visa will not be jeopardized by supporting a union. As a union member, you’ll also be part of an organization that will stand with you if you face any issues at the University.
How is a union different than the GSO (or my department’s Registered Student Organization)?
As a union the university has to recognize us as a collective bargaining unit. This gives us the power to collectively negotiate our contracts with Syracuse instead of being isolated workers at the whims of the unilateral decision-making power of administration, as is currently the case. We would also have structure and organization as a group of graduate workers to discuss, negotiate, and make democratic decisions about issues that affect us.