Harvard disputed union organizers’ objection to a November student unionization vote, arguing that the University provided accurate lists of eligible voters in the election.
For many students on both sides of the unionization question, the initial vote count and the stalled progress of the unionization effort is surprising.
The National Labor Relations Board will begin a hearing Feb. 21 to decide which votes should be counted in the November election intended to decide whether eligible Harvard students form a union.
Harvard student union organizers filed an objection Thursday to a November election that could determine whether or not eligible students can form a union, arguing that the University may have prevented eligible voters from participating.
The National Labor Relations Board will hold hearings to determine the fate of Harvard’s student unionization effort after a vote count Thursday morning showed that the election remains too close to call.
Columbia University has objected to the “conduct” of a vote permitting eligible students at the school to form a union and called for a new union election, arguing to the National Labor Relations Board that alleged voting day violations could have skewed the results of the election.
An overwhelming majority of Columbia’s graduate and undergraduate teaching and research assistants voted in favor of forming a union.
Ballot boxes containing student votes have remained sealed for nearly two weeks, which is standard protocol until all questions about challenged ballots are resolved.
Around 1,000 challenged ballots have delayed a tally to determine whether or not eligible Harvard students voted to unionize.
Officials at the National Labor Relations Board have not yet begun counting the ballots from last week's union election due to the time-consuming process of sifting through challenges.
Eligible graduate student research and teaching assistants, as well as undergraduate teaching assistants, cast their ballots for or against unionization at the Phillips Brooks House Association in Harvard Yard and the Dental School in Longwood.
Students for and against graduate student unionization have escalated their organizing activity in preparation of the official vote on Wednesday and Thursday.
A loosely organized effort opposed to student unionization has escalated its activities in the leadup to this week’s vote on whether students from across Harvard’s graduate schools and the College will form a collective bargaining unit.