Union Looks Ahead To Med Area Vote
United Auto Worker affiliate District 65 continues to solicit support from Medical Area clerical and technical personnel in anticipation of a representation election.
But a spokesman for the regional director of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) refused to comment on when a decision on the possible election will be handed down.
NLRB regional director Robert W. Fuchs is now reviewing a ruling made by hearing officer Maria C. Walsh on August 10, which recommended that the results of the April 9 election be overturned and a new election ordered. District 65 lost the spring vote, 390-329.
Since Walsh's summer decision, University attorneys have filed "exceptions" to her brief and union lawyers have responded to Harvard's objections. The case is now before Fuchs.
Fuchs can either uphold Walsh's ruling and set an election date or agree with Harvard's argument that statements made during last spring's campaign by supervisory personnel did not unfairly influence the vote's outcome.
Either side in the dispute can then appeal Fuch's decision to NLRB federal offices in Washington.
"We haven't had any word as to when the regional director will make his decision." District 65 organizer Kris Rondeau said yesterday.
Fuchs has an unlimited amount of time to file what is technically called a "supplemental decision," but Rondeau said she has heard rumors that he will end his deliberations within six weeks.
"We're just hoping there'll be a decision soon," Rondeau said.
District 65 has been trying to unionize Med Area clerical and technical workers since 1974.
In addition to its drive to organize the 850 secretaries and technicians in the Med Area, District 65 has undertaken a representation effort on the University's main campus. Union sources said yesterday that while the main campus drive is still in its preliminary stages, the campaign will be stepped up in a few weeks.
At Cornell University, District 65 represents 900 maintenance workers and is trying to unionize the university's clerical and technical employees. Cornell's custodial workers have threatened to go on strike Monday if their contract demands are not met. The maintenance personnel staged a one-day walkout last Saturday.
At Yale, District 65 is involved in a drive similar to its ongoing attempt at Harvard.