BARGAINING: Second Session Summary April 17, 2017


Today, the GEO Bargaining Team (BT) and the UIUC Administration held their second bargaining session. Thank you to all members who attended! Please read below for more information on what happened today and what comes next.

Goals for the meeting

The purpose of today’s bargaining session was to hear the Administration’s response to our comprehensive proposal (presented to them at the first meeting) and, hopefully, to see a full counter-proposal from the Administration. We also sought to have the location changed for future bargaining sessions to a building on campus, as the Fire Service Institute is difficult for many members to get to.

What GEO did

We heard the Administration’s response to our proposal, including some new information requests.

For the location of future bargaining sessions, we proposed the McKinley Foundation, located near central campus. They had concerns about meeting anywhere else other than the Fire Service Institute, and we addressed all of their concerns in our proposal of the McKinley Foundation, which we have already booked and have offered to pay for. Despite this, they still would not commit to giving their final answer during the session, instead offering to get back to us about the location “soon.”

What the Administration did

The Administration did not present a full proposal, but instead presented three short counter-proposals where the only change they made was to pronouns. They were not willing to commit to showing us a full comprehensive counter-proposal. This appears to be a stalling tactic because they want to “chip away” at our contract priorities without giving us a comprehensive counter-proposal. Additionally, the Administration has not agreed to providing us with a wage proposal at this time, despite this being one of our key Bargaining Pillars.

At the first session, both parties exchanged information requests. While we responded with their requested information in a timely manner, they have still not answered ours.

This is unacceptable.

To bargain in good faith, we need to see their full counter-proposal.

How GEO responded

Consistent with GEO’s past negotiations, we stated that we cannot address individual counter-proposals until we have seen their comprehensive counter-proposal. We provided answers to questions they had about our proposal.

What comes next

Please attend the next bargaining session: we need you!

The Bargaining Team represents you at the table. We look to you for input when we go to break out sessions. The more people in the room, the better informed our decisions at the table.

Attending bargaining sessions is the best way to actively engage in the negotiation of your wages, healthcare, and other protections. It is perfectly acceptable to come late or leave early from a bargaining session if you can’t stay the entire time. Just being present demonstrates our unity and strength to the Administration. You can even bring your work if you want. Coffee and food will be provided.  

The BT and the Administration agreed to meet for our next bargaining session on Tuesday, May 2, 2017, from 9:00 a.m. to 12 p.m. We are waiting on the Administration to get back to us regarding a meeting location; be on the look-out for a follow-up email about this.

The next GEO Bargaining Team meeting is on Wednesday, April 19, 7:00 to 9:00 p.m., at the GEO office in the McKinley Foundation Sun Room (809 S. Fifth St., Champaign–enter through the Presby Hall doors on Fifth St.). All members are welcome to the meeting. If you have questions about bargaining or the BT’s proposal, attending this meeting is the best way to address them. You can also reach us at


More ways to be involved with bargaining:

  • Talk to your GEO department Steward
  • Attend a BT meeting
  • Attend bargaining sessions
  • Talk to your GEO colleagues


Here’s a link to the recap of the first bargaining session.


Follow GEO online:


Twitter: @geo_uiuc

Facebook: @uigeo  @geosolcomm

Instagram: @geo_uiuc


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See the GEO event calendar for future BT committee meetings, bargaining sessions, and other events. Add it to your Google calendar by searching for Bargaining Team meetings and bargaining sessions are open to all members. Please contact the Bargaining Team ( with any questions.