University of Illinois at Chicago faculty members held a two-day strike in February to protest the lack of progress in their contract talks. Wednesday, the faculty union and the university announced they had a tentative deal. | Sun-Times File Photo
Updated: April 16, 2014 3:55PM
The University of Illinois at Chicago and its faculty union said Wednesday the two sides have reached a tentative agreement on labor contracts for tenure-track and non-tenure track members.
The two sides had argued over increasing salary and promotion opportunities for full-time faculty who are non-tenured, and boosting the pay of certain long-term faculty who make less money than their newly hired peers.
“Many aspects of faculty work life and professional conditions are dramatically improved under the new agreement,” the union said in a statement.
The contract will extend through next year.
The union statement said the contract details will not be revealed until the 1,150 members vote at the end of next week.
John Shuler, communications group leader for the faculty union, said Wednesday the agreement “is an important first step” in the life of the union, but declined to give details.
He said union leaders will recommend that members ratify the agreement.
“It’s up to our members to decide,” Shuler said.
The two sides had been negotiating the university’s first faculty labor contract for almost two years. Just last week, the union had set a new strike date of April 23 if bargaining continued to stall. The faculty staged a two-day strike in February to call attention to the lack of progress.
Chancellor Paula Allen-Meares and Provost Lon Kaufman issued a joint statement Wednesday which said:
“Both sides in this long process have been focused on the teaching, research and service missions of the university, and this agreement will allow us to move forward together to serve the city and the state and, most of all, our students.”