Vox’s Links to Stories on Today’s NLRB Ruling


What follows is taken from Vox’s daily newsletter Sentences:

“Student Union” Gets a Whole New Meaning

–The National Labor Relations Board ruled on Tuesday that graduate students at private universities have the right to form unions and bargain collectively. [Vox / Libby Nelson]

–The decision doesn’t affect grad students at public universities. Those grad students are public employees of their states (and therefore governed by state laws about public sector unions). [WSJ / Melanie Trottman]

–This is the third time in 16 years the NLRB has ruled on this question: It ruled in favor of graduate students in 2000 (with board members appointed by Bill Clinton), then against them in 2004 (after board appointments from George W. Bush). [Bloomberg / Josh Eidelson]

–At its core, the question is whether graduate students who work for the university (as teaching or research assistants, for example) are students or workers. [NPR / Richard Gonzales]

–Tuesday’s NLRB decision observed that they could be both — and that, as workers, they were entitled to unionize. [Inside Higher Ed / Scott Jaschik]

–The decision, if it holds after the November elections, could cause universities to rethink the way they staff up — in recent years, universities have relied on adjunct professors and graduate students to do more and more of the teaching. [Washington Post / Danielle Douglas-Gabriel]

–It would also be a reflection — as well as a potential spur — of the growing “white collarization” of the US labor movement. [LAT / Alana Semuels]

–But depending on who’s elected in November, it could easily be reversed again. Who knows? [Vox / Libby Nelson]


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