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Fordham Graduate Workers Walk Out! Three Day Unfair Labor Practice Strike

Just over one year ago nearly 250 graduate workers at New York City’s Fordham University voted overwhelmingly to join CWA Local 1104 and the Graduate Student Employees Union. But after seven months of stalled bargaining and stonewalling from the university, the workers are still without a first union contract.

The workers, who perform essential job duties including teaching classes, running labs, tutoring students, supporting the faculty’s work, providing administrative assistance, and make between $15,000 and $20,000 per year, are seeking pay raises, affordable health and dental insurance, a formal grievance structure, and paid parental leave. But they’ve been met with silence and zero compromises from the university.

On Monday, April 24th, Fordham graduate workers walked off the job for a three day Unfair Labor Practice strike to demand that the university come to the table and bargain fairly. 

“Management simply refuses the very basic union demands like just cause and a fair grievance process,” said Billy Gallagher, Assistant to the Vice President for CWA District 1, addressing the huge crowd of striking Fordham workers and supporters. “Instead they’re stonewalling negotiations, engaging in bad faith bargaining, and violating labor laws by failing to provide information requested. Let’s face it - that’s union busting! What does it tell you when they don’t want to agree to a contract with basic demands? They don’t want to share the power!”

Fordham grad workers walkout

Workers were joined on the picket line by Manhattan Borough President Mark Levine and representatives from the offices of New York State Assemblymember Linda Rosenthal and New York City Public Advocate Jumaane Williams. 

Check out video of the first day of the picket line at Fordham’s Lincoln Center campus here!

After hearing from several speakers, the massive crowd serenaded the CWA Fordham bargaining team with “Solidarity Forever” as the bargaining team marched in to their next bargaining session with management.

And click here to sign the pledge supporting CWA Local 1104 Fordham graduate workers.