Typists to Vote on Affiliation With Striking Printer's Union

Employees of the Typing and Copy Center will decide today whether to join local 300 of the Graphic Arts International Union (GAIU), one of two printer's locals striking against the University for higher wages.

The six typists, who work for The Harvard University Gazette and many University departments and offices, have never unionized. "Their area of work was never claimed by any union," John B. Butler, director of personnel and the University's representative in strike negotiations, said yesterday.

The question of the typists' affiliation with local 300 was raised before the local went on strike, and it is likely that the typists will join the strike if they affiliate with the union.

"They have the same types of complaints on wages as do the printers, and there is the second factor of union solidarity," Luther M. Ragin Jr. '76, said yesterday. Ragin is acting as a liason between all organizations supporting the printer's strike. Union officials were unavailable for comment.

The six typists were reluctant to comment before their vote at 11:30 a.m. today, but sources close to the union said yesterday that there is much sentiment among the typists to join the union. Butler said he did not know whether the typists will vote to join the union.


Should the typists vote to join local 300 and agree to support the strike, the outside company that prints The Gazette probably would support the strike. Unionized printers around Boston have been respecting the printer's strike at Harvard by turning down University printing contracts, Ragin said.

Up to the Union

A union spokesman at Harwich Lithographers, The Gazette's printers, said that whether they would print the newspaper is up to union officials.

The University, the GAIU local 300, and the Typing and Copy Center employees have agreed to a secret ballot election under National Labor Relations Board auspices.

Negotiations between the University and union representatives for the 32 striking lithographers and bookbinders are deadlocked.

Butler said recently that the University would not allow the dispute to be resolved by binding arbitration.

Over 120 Harvard students rallied last Friday outside Holyoke Center to support the striking printers.