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Provost Camfield message to faculty about potential UAW strike - Nov. 7, 2022

Dear Colleagues,

UAW, the union representing postdocs, Graduate Student Researchers (GSRs), Teaching Assistants (TAs) and undergraduate academic employees (e.g., Learning Assistants, tutors, readers, graders), has passed a vote to strike. The union has given us notice that they intend to strike beginning November 14 at 8:00 am. Rest assured that the University of California remains in nonstop negotiations with the union trying to head off this action, and we are hopeful the sides can come to an agreement.

Should a strike come to pass, some of these employees may choose to participate until a resolution is reached. With the guidance of Department Chairs, Academic Departments should make plans to ensure instructional continuity. Faculty who employ academic student employees (undergraduates and graduates), GSRs, postdocs, and academic researchers (e.g., project scientists/specialists/researchers) should plan for research continuity, and other units for business continuity.

A union member’s contemplation or participation in their own union’s strike is a protected activity and must be respected. During this delicate time, it is important to refrain from engaging in conversation with union members about any aspect of the strike, including their own intentions. It is also important not to make statements condemning or praising employees’ protected activities, and to refrain from dealing directly, soliciting grievances, or making promises to employees. These guidelines apply to verbal and written communications, including social media.

We understand that not knowing whether a strike can be averted will cause some anxiety and we ask you for your patience, mindfulness and grace. We expect that you will have questions. Please convey them to your Department Chair or supervisor and we will seek guidance from labor relations. Most of all we ask that you be polite and respectful of all members of our community, even if your opinions differ.

The negotiations are dynamic, with new information and new unfounded rumors coming out all the time. Thank you for your patience as the University of California continues to work with the union in seeking to finalize a contract. We regret the potential inconvenience.


Gregg Camfield


Gregg Camfield
Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost
Professor of Literature | School of Social Sciences, Humanities and Arts
University of California, Merced
(209) 228-4439 |