Columbia teaching and research assistants vote to join union

AP News
|
Posted: Dec 09, 2016 5:45 PM

NEW YORK (AP) — Graduate teaching and research assistants at Columbia University have voted to join a union affiliated with the United Auto Workers.

The Detroit-based UAW announced Friday the New York Ivy League university students voted 1,602 to 623 in favor of union representation. The voting took place Wednesday and Thursday.

The Columbia vote came after the National Labor Relations Board ruled in August graduate students at private universities have a right to collective bargaining.

New York University is the only private university in the U.S. where graduate students have a union contract. Tens of thousands of graduate students at public universities are represented by unions.

Union backers at Columbia say a union contract would give graduate students more control over their working conditions.

Columbia administrators warned students unionization could affect their academic experiences negatively.