TUGSA, Temple reach second tentative agreement

The tentative deal includes an increase in raises and subsidies for dependent healthcare.

The tentative agreement includes an initial raise increase throughout the life of the contract. | ROBERT CRUZ / THE TEMPLE NEWS

TUGSA has reached a second tentative agreement with Temple University amid their five-week-long strike, the union tweeted Thursday night.  

“This TA reflects the incredible work of striking members over the past six weeks,” TUGSA wrote in the tweet. “It includes significant movement on all four of our core demands! Members will now vote on whether or not to ratify the TA.”

The tentative agreement includes an initial raise increase throughout the life of the contract, and teaching and research assistants will receive the same pay regardless of their academic discipline, TUGSA wrote.

The two parties also agreed to a partial subsidy for dependent healthcare, and increases to paid parental and bereavement leave, which include allowances for international travel, the union wrote. 

New language in the process for raising grievances also allows TUGSA to better organize and defend its members from “overwork, discrimination and harassment,” they added.

“We are ready to see our graduate students get back to doing what they do best, which is teaching and mentoring our students while also conducting innovative, industry-leading research,” wrote Deirdre Childress Hopkins, a university spokesperson, in a statement to The Temple News. 

The university is optimistic that the agreement will be accepted when TUGSA presents it to its membership for ratification today, Hopkins wrote.  

TUGSA voted to reject their first tentative agreement with the university on Feb. 21. The proposed deal offered a retroactive pay increase of 10 percent, a one-time payment of $1,000 to every union member and increases to minimum pay during the next three academic years.

“In short, we have made meaningful, material gains on every major issue we set out to address in bargaining,” the union wrote. “Over the next few days, members will vote on whether or not to ratify this as the new contract.”

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