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Stanford Report, September 6, 2000

United Stanford Workers approve contract

Technicians, maintenance staff and service workers last Friday overwhelmingly approved a new contract with the university that allocates 13 percent wage raises over the next three years.

United Stanford Workers, a chapter of Local 715 of the Service Employees International Union, represents 800 workers on campus and 325 staff at the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center. Danielle Mahones, the union's worksite organizer director, said that 92.5 percent of an undisclosed number of votes cast approved the agreement. The contract, which took effect Sept. 1 and runs through Aug. 31, 2003, gives 5 percent raises the first year and 4 percent hikes each of the following two years. "There were some tough issues, but negotiations were very respectable; no acrimony," said Keith Smith, the university's manager of labor relations. Diane Patrick, a lawyer at Ropes & Gray in Boston, was the university's chief negotiator.

Other contract changes include giving members the option of switching from their current Stanford Retirement Annuity Plan to the Stanford Contributory Retirement Plan during the third year of the contract. New union members hired on or after Jan. 1, 2001, will automatically participate in the Contributory Retirement Plan when they are eligible after one year of service, said Smith. Furthermore, improved dental insurance and life insurance options will be offered effective in January.

In other changes, food service workers in the lower, second-tier pay scale will receive a one-time 15 percent raise and custodians a one-time 7.5 percent raise from Sept. 1. In addition to these workers, Smith added that plumbers, steamfitters, pipefitters, electricians, water system technicians and principal science engineering technicians will receive raises that reflect changes in the labor market. SR