United Academics Contract Information

Successor contract ratified by United Academics

The University of Oregon and United Academics (UA) reached a tentative agreement for a successor contract on June 17, 2022, and UA members have ratified the agreement. The new CBA goes into effect immediately and runs through June 30, 2024. The summary below outlines changes and additions.

Collective Bargaining Agreement Summary

Significant Changes

Article 4: Unit-Level Policies
Every academic department or unit develops and maintains discipline specific policies that detail workloads, promotion and review considerations, and internal governance. The 2022 agreement formalizes the unit-level policy revision process, which includes greater dialogue between department faculty and deans, clearer timelines, and greater context for the Office of the Provost in reviewing, approving, and establishing unit-level policies.

Article 15: Classification and Rank
This article describes the types of faculty positions and subgroupings based on duties and qualifications. The parties agreed to three innovations:

  1. Teaching Professor: To honor long-term Career faculty instructors and lecturers who have been identified by their excellence in the classroom, the University has agreed to create an honorific title and program to further their contribution to university-wide teaching practices.  
  2. Postbaccalaureate Scholar: This new category is for recent undergraduates looking to gain formal mentored research experience in a lab prior to pursuing graduate education, medical school, or a career of their choosing.
  3. Research Assistant Types: To reflect the heterogeneity of duties and level of qualifications across the University’s more than 300 research assistant positions, several subtypes have been agreed to for better reflecting employment and discerning equity.

Article 19: Career Review and Promotion
This article establishes the structure for Career faculty reviews including regular performance reviews, promotion reviews, and newly created continuous employment reviews. The parties agreed to several major changes:

  1. Performance Improvement Plans: The parties agreed on a structure and process for addressing performance concerns for Career faculty.
  2. Promotion Rigor: The parties agreed to more stringent eligibility requirements for pursuing Career faculty promotion along with establishing baseline criteria.
  3. Continuous Employment Reviews: To recognize long-term Career faculty who have achieved their highest level of promotion and to create a more equitable review and increase framework for Professors of Practice the parties established major continuous employment reviews.

Article 20: Tenure Review and Promotion
This article establishes the structure for Tenured and Tenure-Track faculty reviews. There are two primary changes in the article:

  1. Formal Review Option for Associate Professors: In a shift away from the informal structure of reviews between tenure and promotion to full professor, the parties agreed to allow for formal reviews for tenured associate professors if there are indications they are not on track for promotion.
  2. Development Plans: The parties agreed to formal criteria for post-tenure reviews and a clearer framework for addressing performance issues for tenured faculty.

Article 26: Salary
The parties agreed on the following related to salary:

  1. Annual Salary Increases:
    • 5% across the board increase in January 2022;
    • 2% across the board increase in January 2023;
    • 3% merit pool for Career and Tenured and Tenure Track faculty in January 2024.
  2. Salary Floors: A more equitable salary floor structure with moderate increases as of July 1, 2023.
  3. Review Related Salary Increases: Added clearer controls around review related salary increases and created Career continuous employment increases (see Article 19).

New Article: Caregiving
The parties agreed to create a new article to highlight the University’s commitments to address faculty concerns related to caregiving. The university has agreed to:

  1. Care.com: Provide membership access to care.com to assist faculty in addressing caregiving needs.
  2. Travel Support Fund: Creates a travel support fund for faculty to mitigate the impacts of university travel on their caregiving responsibilities.
  3. Community Support Fund: Creates a one-time pool of funds to incentivize the expansion of childcare options in the Eugene/Springfield area.

Commitments to Continued Conversation
The parties agreed to future direction and continued discussions on a number of topics, including:

  • Faculty Transitions to Retirement (Article 31): In Fall of 2022 the parties will explore options for replacing the Tenure Reduction Program that better serves faculty transitions to retirement.
  • Career Instructional Faculty Internal Equity Study: In FY23 the parties will contract and partner with an outside consultant to look at salary equity between Career faculty.
  • Paid Leave Oregon: Later this year when the state finalizes rulemaking around Paid Family and Medical Leave Insurance under HB2005(2019) the parties will engage in conversations around leaves.

Other Updated Articles

Article 9: Union Rights: Union rights details access, lists, and information provided by the university to the Union, which was updated to reflect broader legal rights under HB2016(2019).

Article 11: Release Time: Under the Public Employees Collective Barging Act (PECBA) the university must provide release time for those engaged in union service. The parties agreed to a clearer system and timelines for requesting and approving releases.

Article 12: Facilities and Support: Formalized the process to submit concerns related to equipment and classroom/office temperature. 

Article 13: Health and Safety: Formalized the process to report safety concerns. 

Article 14: Non-Discrimination: Formalized the University’s new hire and biennial non-discrimination training requirement.

Article 16: Notices of Appointment: This article specifies the logistics of employment for new and current faculty members. The parties agreed on language to address concerns related to reporting sites and relocation, a clearer framework for joint appointments that span multiple departments or units, and rights around funding-contingent employment, which is critical for sustaining externally funded research and temporary programs.

Article 17: Professional Responsibilities: The parties agreed for departments and units to revisit their workload policies over the next two years with a focus on units with high teaching loads and equitable distribution of responsibilities.

Article 21: Review Decision Appeals: The parties agreed to a new structure and process for appealing denials of tenure or promotion and mid-term reviews with terminal contracts. 

Article 23: Arbitration: Added an information gathering step and possible offramp prior to contesting a career layoff decision. 

Article 28: Miscellaneous Benefits: Added TriMet passes for Portland based faculty. 

Article 29: Retirement Benefits: Technical edits to reflect legislative changes. 

Article 30: Benefits for Retired Faculty: Updates to reflect parking system changes. 

Article 32: Leaves: Integration of gender inclusive language, additional holiday allowances (Juneteenth and Veterans Day), and agreement to continue discussing paid family and medical leave insurance under HB2005(2019). 

Article 33: Sabbatical: Simplified sabbatical eligibility considerations, salary calculations, and return service expectations. 

Article 35: Professional Development: Formalized allowances for professional development funds.eholders apprised, engaged, and informed.