5/01/17 – Ongoing Censorship Of Our Message
We’ve had our posters stolen and defaced so we decided to use publicly available TVs on three floors of BRB. The AFT apparently didn’t like that very much, so they threatened to press labor law violations against the university in order to force our slide to be taken down.
Why do we want to be represented by an organization that feels the first step is to threaten legal action? A grad student union should be run for students and exclusively by students. No other organization, including the AFT, should be playing any role.
We are tired of having our message censored.
4/19/17 – Posters Being Removed
We have recently started to put up posters and over the past few days, several have gone missing. Today we found one of the posters in the trash can. We understand that unionization is a hot-button issue, but censoring someone’s message is not the way to produce constructive dialogue.
On the bright side, whoever did this at least placed it in the recycle bin.
4/3/17 – Petition Against Pan-Graduate School Unionization
One of our core beliefs is that a pan-graduate school union cannot represent the diverse interests of all twelve graduate schools at Penn. Currently, the bargaining group is being defined by GET-UP with little to no input from the individual programs. We believe that each graduate program should be able to democratically decide whether or not they want to be potentially represented by GET-UP.
We have partnered with another student group, GETDN, in order to give graduate students a voice. GETDN was recently started by fellow students independently of No Penn Union and has provided invaluable support and assistance.
Our goal is to use a petition to collect individual graduate student responses from which we will determine the percentage of students within each graduate program who do not want to be part of the GET-UP Union. We will compile the responses and use them to advocate on our behalf to GET-UP, the University of Pennsylvania and/or NLRB. We hope you become as informed as possible in making your decision. This petition is not a vote in an official union election. As far as we know, GET-UP has not submitted a petition for an election to the NLRB. If there is an election, we URGE YOU TO VOTE.
3/22/17 – GET-UP Planning To Visit The Homes of Graduate Students
A concerned student has sent us a message that GET-UP has announced plans to continue visiting the homes of graduate students, despite numerous complaints. We do not know how they have obtained the personal information of graduate students, but we continue to demand that GET-UP refrain from these intrusive home visits. No other organization at Penn tries to obtain members through visiting the personal addresses of students. See below for the email sent to GET-UP members.
3/21/17 – GAPSA Holding Unionization Panel on March 27
GAPSA is holding a panel featuring us, GET-UP, and several faculty members on March 27 from 6-8! Check out the Facebook event for details. Come by if you are concerned about unionization and/or have any questions!
3/19/17 – GET-UP Visiting Homes Unannounced
We have recently received several complaints of a particularly disturbing turn of events: GET-UP union representatives are visiting graduate students’ homes in order to get signatures.
How GET-UP has gotten the personal addresses of graduate students is not known. Regardless, it is completely inappropriate for GET-UP to bother graduate students at their home. We are publicly demanding that GET-UP stop these intrusive recruitment tactics and refrain from contacting students outside of school.
3/17/17 – Kickoff Meeting Notes and New Flyers!
Transparency is key to being an open and honest organization so we will be publishing our meeting notes and presentations every time we have them. Check out of kickoff meeting below!
Thanks to everyone who came to our first meeting yesterday! We had a great discussion about how to best approach our reach-out efforts and how to target our message. Right now, our biggest need is to simply get the word out as GET-UP has a nine month head start on us. We are currently looking for volunteers to head our reach out efforts to the different schools that GET-UP is targeting. For more information, feel free to download our meeting notes/presentation here. If you want to be involved, please email or contact us!
We have also created several flyers! Feel free to hang them up to help spread the word!
3/14/2017 – Penn Releases New Benefits, GET-UP Tries to Claim Credit
Many of us received an email today outlined three new benefits for graduate students:
- All full-time graduate and professional students will have free access to the Pottruck Health & Fitness Center, Sheerr Pool, and Fox Fitness Center.Currently, graduate and professional students need to purchase separate memberships to access the University’s fitness facilities.
- Penn will commit $1M in annual funding for need-based grants to PhD students in good standing to help defray the costs of extended health insurance, as well as dependent insurance and daycare for PhDs with spouses and children.
- Subsidize 50% of the cost of Penn Dental insurance.
Soon after release, GET-UP implied that the union was the reason for these new benefits. However, these benefits have been the works for nearly a year, long before GET-UP existed. The new benefits were created due to the collaboration between the administration and students who voiced concerns, not any pressure from the union. Once again, it is apparent that Penn is willing and able work directly with us, and we do not need to pay GET-UP for representation.
3/12/2017 – First Meeting This Thursday!
We will be having our first meeting (with free food!) this Thursday (3/16) from 6-730 in Room 305 at the Grad Center at 3615 Locust Walk on campus! We will be discussing strategy, union laws, and our plan for the next couple weeks! Come by if you want to be involved!
No Penn Union is a voluntary team of Penn graduate students that are concerned about the efforts and goals of GET-UP/AFT/AFL-CIO’s unionization efforts. Our hope is that we can clear up any misinformation and address concerns that other graduate students have about the unionization attempt. We believe that unionization will lead to a severe and negative impact on our academic and scholarly pursuits.