District 65 Says University Escalating Anti-Union Tactics
The union trying to organize clerical and technical workers in the Medical Area has called a recent shuffle in the personnel department an attempt to strengthen the University's anti-union campaign, but Harvard officials yesterday denied the charge.
Organizers for District 65 of the United Auto Workers--currently seeking signatures before the union files with the National Labor Relations Board to hold an election--said yesterday the decision to transfer Vivian Rubeski from Holyoke Center to the Medical School represented an effort to defuse their campaign.
"She (Rubeski) was very active before the election last time, so we assume she was brought back because of her experience," Leslie A. Sullivan, a principal organizer for District 65, said yesterday.
The union failed in a 1977 attempt to organize Med Area workers following a protracted struggle with the University. Employees rejected that representation bid by 436-346.
Daniel D. Cantor, director of personnel, attributed the shift yesterday to a continuing effort to decentralize his office. "I think the day-to-day operations are better done within a plant--so I've tried to get all the major schools to get a personnel office of their own," Cantor said.
Rubeski last week acknowledged she had been transferred before the previous battle between the University and District 65 but denied that her new post--liaison at the Med School--involved waging an anti-union campaign.
"I took the job because I enjoyed the Med Area--I don't think my new role has anything to do with a campaign," Rubeski said. She declined to comment on her opinion of District 65, saying, "It's a very delicate matter."
In response to District 65's charges, Rubeski said, "It's reasonable to assume that from their point of view--but union-busting is not my role."
Joyce Walsh, who holds a position similar to Rubeski's at the School of Public Health, said yesterday it was not her "professional role" to get involved in an anti-union campaign. Walsh declined to comment on her opinion of the union.