SEIU Local 503/SubLocal 083 at Oregon State University

Latest Updates

Covid-19 Update 5/20/2020

Oregon State University and Union Leadership signed a Letter of Agreement regarding alternatives to layoffs today, 5/20. Management has shared that 3 workers will be put in a Leave Without Pay status with all core health insurance benefits paid for by OSU.  Around 30 workers will be put into a furlough status and Work Share program, a program that will be co-signed by OSU and SEIU. In addition OSU is laying off 9 people under the regular layoff process.  Work Share is a program through the Employment Department that will provide for Unemployment Benefits that will partially cover lost wages.  We are going to be sending information soon and providing meetings for workers.  Union leadership pushed hard for accountability, with language about shared sacrifice across all employment groups at OSU. We also demanded regular meetings on the budget and enrollment numbers with the shared goal of all workers being back on campus full-time.

Questions? Scroll to bottom for names of stewards, and contact organizer Siobhan Burke at 630-699-0281 (call or text any time) or burkes@seiu503.org.


Our Sublocal has a Hardship Fund. You can apply here by filling out Hardship Fund Application.

SEIU 503 Hardship Fund: donate or apply! https://seiu503.org/members/seiu-503-covid-19-hardship-fund/

OSU Hardship Fund: https://hr.oregonstate.edu/covid-19-resources/faculty-staff-covid-19-disaster-relief-fund-under-irs-code-section-139


Unemployment Insurance Help – WEEKLY WEBINARS

Some members are facing reduced hours. You can file for unemployment. Here’s weekly webinars you can attend from labor partners at AFL-CIO. https://oraflcio.org/covid19members

USE OF COVID 19 LEAVE: You can use it through Dec, 31 2020.  The LOA expires, but the CARES act guarantees use of Covid 19 leave through the end of the year. OSU HR has assured us use of this leave will continue to be approved broadly to guarantee safety of workers and Oregon.


If you used Covid 19 leave between March 15-31 it will be refunded to your Emp Center leave balances. Concerned about errors, please contact Patty DeLuca  at Patty.DeLuca@oregonstate.edu.


You can apply for UI insurance if you face reduced hours for any issue. You should apply as soon as you can. Then refile when your hours are reduced.

When you are ready to apply, you can access the online claim system through: https://govstatus.egov.com/ui-benefits/benefits.  The site also includes an FAQ list.

This YouTube video from the Employment Department is really helpful and essential viewing in going through the steps of what questions you will need to answer if you are applying for unemployment benefits due to COVID-19.  https://youtu.be/995zJOcYscs

When you are applying for unemployment, OSU has provided the contact information of OSU HR, where the UI claim notice should be sent to:  https://covid.oregonstate.edu/node/2921


Covid-19 Update 4/23/2020

Important Information:

  1. All employees can take the 80 hours of emergency Covid 19 leave. Until May 7 Covid 19 leave can be taken for the same reasons you would take sick leave and all reasons related to Covid 19. After May 7 (unless we sign another LOA) the reason must be related to Covid 19. This is still pretty broad according to Oregon State University HR. The objective is to Stay Home and Save Lives.  OSU page on leave is here. 
  2. After you have taken your 80 hours, use other accrued leaves. You also are able to take advantage of expanded FMLA and OFLA leaves.  Many people have asked us about using these leaves to care for children who are at home due to school closure or daycare closure.  OSU page on expanded FMLA and OFLA is here. 
  3. A new administrative rule from PEBB that is currently in place through October allows people who go under the 80 hours/month to maintain their health insurance. OSU has posted this information here.  From OSU Employee Labor Relations staff: PEBB Rules Updates:  Information regarding this option and new PEBB rule-making can be found at the following website: https://hr.oregonstate.edu/announcement/coronavirus-guidance-health-insurance-providers.  The site provides updates regarding PEBB’s rule-making, as well as links to each specific insurance plan to which employees may be enrolled.  The benefits team will be pro-actively reaching out to those employees who may be eligible to pursue this option; however, employees can also contact OSU’s employee benefits team at employee.benefits@oregonstate.edu should they have questions.
  4. If you have lost wages due to reduced hours, you can file for Unemployment. Here’s a “how to” from the Oregon AFL-CIO and see information posted above.
  5. For workers in UHDS facing loss of work over the summer, we are advising you to file for Unemployment now. Then restart your claim when you are out of work.
  6. SEIU 503 has a Covid Hardship Fund.  The Board of Directors has put aside $100,000 and members and sublocals are also donating money to this fund.  Our sublocal has donated $2700. You can donate or apply here: https://seiu503.org/members/seiu-503-covid-19-hardship-fund/
  7.  Our Sublocal also has a Hardship Fund. You can apply here by filling out Hardship Fund Application.


SEIU 2019-2021 Collective Bargaining Agreement


SEIU Letter of Agreement with Universities: 


The term of the agreement is through May 7 or through the end of the State Emergency Order. 

We have the ability to extend and/or bargain further agreements. 

SEIU 503 Covid-19 Resources: https://seiu503.org/member_news/covid-19-resources-for-university-employees/

Oregon State University Covid-19 Resources:



Higher Ed COVID-19 LOA 

  • Expands Telecommuting and Flexible work schedules
  • Ensures workers doing cleaning and disinfection are protected
  • Allows trial service workers immediate access to paid leave, accrued & the 80 hours of emergency paid leave
  • Provides an additional 2 weeks of emergency paid sick leave for every employee


With OSU’s latest update, all workers who can, will telecommute. 

For issues related to telework see OSU resource: https://uit.oregonstate.edu/keep-working

Under the agreement we reached if you are rejected for telecommuting you can appeal that to the CHRO (Chief of Human Resources). Please contact us also because we are working on a case by case basis with Human Resources on this.


If management has knowledge that a worker may have been exposed (confirmed case, but not necessarily confirmed contact), the manager must notify the worker within 1 business day.

Using the 80 Hours of Emergency Sick Leave:

How to apply for emergency sick leave: Talk with your supervisor as you normally would, and then code it in Emp Center as described here. Let us know if you have problems. 

As of 3/31, there is a Covid 19 Leave code. 

All workers can access Emergency Sick leave including essential employees. 

Non-Inclusive Reasons for using Emergency Sick Leave:

Sick leave under CBA (you, relative, dependent sick) 

School closure (under LOA)

Daycare closure (under LOA)

Other related reasons to Covid-19 (LOA)  

E.g. Someone who has an underlying condition and is at higher risk for exposure 

Medically mandated (Your doctor says to stay home)

Health (I’ve been exposed/I may have been exposed)

-You can also use the 80 hours intermittently. 

-There is no 10 day waiting period to use the 80 hours. The leave is available to use as of March 16

-The 80 hours can be used by trial service employees. 

-There is no requirement that an employee use or exhaust their accrued leave prior to using the emergency paid sick leave.


Frequently Asked Questions

Q: I’m at home because I was sent home by my employer, self-quarantined or medically mandated quarantine. Will I get paid? A: Yes. You will be able to use the 80 hours of emergency paid leave in the letter of agreement we signed with the universities. You can also use other leave, and you don’t have to use them in particular order. 

Q: If I run out of leave, can I file for unemployment?  A:  If you supervisor has told you they are experiencing a temporary interruption of work, under the contract certain provisions are followed.  If you are in this temporary interruption and you are not being paid,  the changes to UI indicate you can file for unemployment to recover lost wages.  

Q: I’m considered essential staff but I am in an “at risk” group (age, immunocompromised, etc) and would like to use leave to avoid exposure. Can I use leave even if I’m essential staff? A: Yes. Your supervisor should allow you to take leave. If your supervisor isn’t working with you to allow you to take the time off please contact your union steward or organizer. 

Q: Will essential employees who cannot telework receive hazard pay? A: Not at this time, neither our contract or the LOA address hazard pay. SEIU is working on this issue, it would need to be addressed in another Letter of Agreement. 

Q: My coworker is sick and is showing all the symptoms of Covid-19. A: Socially distance and follow guidelines as outlined by the CDC and Oregon Health Authority. Talk to your supervisor, inform them. Call a steward or your union organizer to see what your options are under the contract and new Letter of Agreement for working in hazardous conditions. HR has asked that we report these issues also to Bill Sexton and Corey Viera who will relay them to the social distancing officer, Dan Larson. Send them to Siobhan, Gloria or a steward listed below, or if you send them directly to HR please copy one of us so we can help track your concerns. 

Additionally, if you are concerned about unsafe working conditions the State of Oregon has provided a confidential reporting form through Oregon OSHA. https://www.google.com/url?q=https://www4.cbs.state.or.us/exs/osha/hazrep/&source=gmail&ust=1585249693524000&usg=AFQjCNHiJtC6cWLB7OQx6TARehOGCRp3qw   

Q: Can we utilize Article 58 of the Collective Bargaining Agreement which provides for a 48 hour leave bank for inclement weather or hazardous conditions? 

Unfortunately, the universities did not address campus closures when we negotiated the Letter of Agreement. OSU is not officially closed as a campus so no, at this time.  

Chief Steward: Bray Esch  Contact him at: brady.esch1@gmail.com 


541-404-5832 (essential employee)

Organizer: Siobhan Burke at burkes@seiu503.org or call/text 24/7  630-699-0281

Active Stewards at Oregon State:

Gloria O’Brien East Greenhouse,  obrieng60@gmail.com or call 503-740-7609

Extension Service EPAs: Anne Gross  – anne.gross@oregonstate.edu or cycleon@outlook.com

Valley Library: Deb Carroll and Melissa Hartley  

UHDS Dining Services: 

Noah McKay Noah.robinsonmckay@oregonstate.edu (essential employee)

James Bartholomew 

Dillon Randall

DPS: Brady Esch  brady.esch1@gmail.com 


541-404-5832 (essential employee)

Forestry: Jessica King   jesslynnking@gmail.com



IT: Ken Howard

IT/UHDS: Russ Born

Printing and Mailing: Benjamin Merrell  – merrellaudio@gmail.com

Magruder: Carol Murphy

Vet Med: Tracy Jasted  tjastad@gmail.com racey.jastad@oregonstate.edu (Vet Med questions)

Dixon Recreation: Kerry Tipton

Radiation Center: Chris Kulah (Union President)  ckulah@gmail.com (essential employee)

Ship Ops: Patrick Brashears   bresheap@oregonstate.edu



COVID 19 Update 3/16/2020

If you have immediate questions about coronavirus and your contract email back, contact Siobhan 630.699.0281 or burkes@seiu503.org contact Chief Steward Gloria O’Brien (East Greenhouse Main Campus) at obrieng60@gmail.com or the Membership Assistance Center 830-6 pm at 1-844-503-7348.

The SEIU503 Higher Ed Bargaining team has drafted a Letter of Agreement (L.O.A) in regards to protecting compensation and leave balances in the event of illness or campus closure. We are currently waiting for a response from Brian Caulfield.

Please see the language below highlighting relevant sections of our current Collective Bargaining Agreement. The current CBA is available here.

SEIU 503 Higher Education Contract Collective Bargaining Agreement:


Section 1. Proper safety devices and clothing shall be provided by the university for all employees engaged in work where such devices are necessary to meet the requirements of the Department of Consumer and Business Services and the Oregon Safe Employment Act (ORS 654.001 to 654.295 and 654.991). Such equipment, where provided must be used. The Employer will ensure that workplaces, at a minimum, meet legal standards for health and safety. Upon request of the employee, the Employer will provide the employee with ergonomics information and appropriate training through the process available on each campus.

Section 2(A). If an employee claims that an assigned job or vehicle is unsafe or might unduly endanger the employee’s health and for that reason refuses to do the job or use the vehicle, the employee shall immediately give specific reason(s) in writing to the supervisor. The supervisor shall request an immediate determination by the university Safety Representative, or if none is available, a Safety Representative of the Department of Consumer and Business Services as to whether the job or vehicle is safe or unsafe. (B) Pending determination provided for in this Section, the employee shall be given suitable work elsewhere. (C) Time lost by the employee as a result of any refusal to perform work on the grounds that it is unsafe or might unduly endanger the employee’s health shall not be paid by the university unless the employee’s claim is upheld. Section 3. If in the conduct of official duties an employee is exposed to serious communicable diseases which would require immunization or testing, or if required by the university, the employee shall be provided immunization against or testing for such communicable disease without cost to the employee and without deduction from accrued sick leave. Where immunization or testing shall prevent or help prevent such disease from occurring, employees shall be granted accrued sick leave with pay for the time off from work required for the immunization or testing. An employee shall notify the employee’s supervisor immediately 89 when the employee has knowledge of exposure to a communicable disease. Section 4. Each university will maintain a written procedure for the safe evacuation of buildings in the event of fire, explosion, and threats involving explosive devices or other actual or potential disaster. The written procedure will provide for reasonable efforts to notify employees that a bomb threat has been received when the employees’ work locations are in areas to which the threats have been specifically directed. If management has determined that such a bomb threat does not justify evacuation, an employee so notified, whose absence in management’s opinion would not compromise safety, security or health, will be allowed to leave the employee’s work location on leave without pay status for no longer than the remainder of the employee’s scheduled work shift. The Union will be given the opportunity to provide information to management officials responsible for developing and maintaining notification/evacuation/search procedures and to discuss with such officials any perceived problems with the procedures. Following discussion between the Union and the university management, the procedure will be made known to all employees. Section 5. The university will, at least annually, advise employees of the name and telephone number of the university Safety Representative. Employees are encouraged to report any condition believed to be unsafe to the Safety Representative. After investigation, the reporting employee will be advised promptly of the results of the investigation and the corrective action taken. This does not preclude employees exercising their rights under the law or this Article. Section 6. The Employer shall have a written hazardous material communication program. This written program shall be available to employees and their representatives. Employees shall be informed of any toxic or hazardous materials in their workplace. Section 7. The Employer shall solicit and consider the Union’s comments concerning the policies and procedures referred to in Section 6 of this Article.

Article 50. Section 11. Telecommuting. 

An employee’s written request to the immediate supervisor, and a copy to the chief human resource officer or designee to telecommute will be approved or denied based on the operating needs of the University, and pursuant to the University telecommuting policy. The employee may request to have the denial in writing pursuant to the provisions of Article 9, Section 2 (defines “operational needs”). An approved telecommuting agreement may be rescinded in writing based on the operating needs of the University.

Article 58. Section 2 Inclement Weather/Hazardous Conditions Leave Bank

(c) Employees shall be granted forty-eight (48) hours of paid time to use in the event an entire campus receives a delayed opening or is closed due to inclement weather or hazardous conditions. The University President or designee, in their sole discretion, may declare any hours not worked beyond the forty-eight (48) hours due to the delay or closure as paid time. Such a declaration shall be made within seven (7) calendar days of the campus reopening. Where no declaration is made within that time, or where the declaration is that a form of leave must be used, the subsections (D) and (E), below, are to be followed. When announcing the delay or closure, Universities with multiple locations will specify which location is delayed or closed. The forty-eight (48) hours shall accrue July 1, 2019 and expire June 30, 2021. For employees hired after July 1, 2019, these hours shall accrue on a prorated basis. Unused hours shall not be paid to the employee.


Telecommuting is being encouraged and most supervisors are following guidance. Let us know if you are being refused. 

Union Meeting Announcement:

Thursday, March 19th
Agendas will start at 11:30 and noon. Join us for one.

You can call in for audio only (like a regular phone call/conference call).
Or you can download Zoom on your smartphone (many of you may already have it on one of your devices).

If you will not be able to access this meeting email back asap. Thanks!!
CALL IN INFORMATION: (Thanks to steward Jessica King for setting this up!)
King, Jessica L is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Topic: Your Contract and Coronavirus
Time: Mar 19, 2020 11:30 AM Pacific Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting

Phone Dial-In Information
+1 669 900 6833 US (San Jose)
+1 929 205 6099 US (New York)

Meeting ID: 679 016 327

Join by Polycom/Cisco/Other Room System

Zoom information: https://is.oregonstate.edu/zoom/faqs


This survey about Corona Virus includes information about how our union is advocating for you and we need your feedback!!


Note from chief steward and bargaining delegate Gloria O’Brien:

Union Friends,
We are here as a community to deal with a global pandemic. It is up to all of us to care for our community.
We all can still take positive proactive measures to protect our families and communities. As a community we need to work for our safety. Frequent hand-washing and social distancing are important.
Most importantly, we should follow CDC guidelines . https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/summary.html .  Oregon State University is working with this fluid environment.  https://leadership.oregonstate.edu/coronavirus .
Our Union is working both locally and state wide to offer you relief.  A survey will be sent out via email today. Please respond to our survey so that we can best move forward.
The option of telecommuting is in our current contract. Your supervisor has to provide a written reason to deny your request. So I encourage people to ask for it if at all feasible We are exploring other ideas as well.  If you are facing resistance to telecommuting or other issues please reach out to our organizer at burkes@seiu503.org/630.699.0281, Gloria at obrieng60@gmail.com/541-740-7609. You can also call the Member Assistance Center 830-6pm at 1-844-503 (7348).

We Won a Good Contract — October 2019

A very public thank you to all the union cousins on campus who assisted in this win: Coalition for Graduate Employees, United Academics and SEIU Local 49 who represent the ABM custodians. #Solidarity won the day.

From Newport to Josephine County to Bend to Corvallis, Oregon State classified staff stepped up to lead a strike. THANK YOU!  Let’s be ready next time: volunteer a couple hours a month to be a steward!  Our stewards at OSU are not that busy;  they do act as a resource for their co-workers and as the union network that keeps people connected.
Want to be a steward or just go to contract enforcement training? Email me at burkes@seiu503.org. 



Here’s a complete list of articles and changes:



Here are the highlights:

TERM : 2 Years (July 1, 2019 – June 30, 2021)

COLA:  3% retroactive to July 1, 2019 pending ratification and another 2.1% starting July 1, 2020.


INCLEMENT WEATHER: 48 hours of paid inclement weather over the 2 year contract to be used if campuses are closed. For people who are “essential services” and must come in, pay rate will be 2.5X your regular rate.

STEPS: Regular steps in both years of the contract

LONGEVITY INCREASE:  All workers with 5 years of service who are “topped out” for one year past their anniversary date as of 11/1, will get an additional 2.5% added to their base salary on 11/1/19.


● High Voltage Electrician Differential increase from 10% to 30% for all time performing the work

● Veterinary Technician 2 Specialty Certification Differential $1.50 per hour for specialty certification holders
● Allowing Co-Gen Engineers to receive differentials and deleting the accompanying letter of agreement Article 21 – Salary

All salaries will reflect Portland min. wage effective January 2020. ($12.50), and so these steps will be deleted.

● Step Deletion. Delete the following steps on January 1, 2020;
○ Salary Range 5 Steps 7 and 8
○ Salary Range 5B Steps 7 and 8
○ Salary Range 6 Steps 6 and 7
○ Salary Range 7 Steps 5 and 6
○ Salary Range 8 Steps 4 and 5
○ Salary Range 8B Step 5
○ Salary Range 9 Steps 3 and 4
○ Salary Range 10 Steps 2 and 3
○ Salary Range 11 Steps 1 and 2
○ Salary Range 12 Step 1

● Salary Selective Adjustments. Effective November 1, 2019 the following classifications will see an increase in salary range as noted below;

Classification Class # Current Range New Range Architectural Consultant 3615 27 30

Architectural Drafter 2 3151 18 23

Athletic Equipment Coordinator 0715 15B 19

Campus Public Safety Officers 5522 17 22

Construction Project Manager 1 4270 23 26

Construction Project Manager 2 4271 26 30

Electrical/Control System Technician4248 27 30

Electrician 4213 26 28

HVAC Control Technician

4112 20B 25 Locksmith

4227 18B 22 Maintenance Electrician 4204 17T 19T

Plumber 4211 23B 27

Radiation Protection Tech 1 3450 19 24

Radiation Protection Tech 2 3451 24 27

Radiation Protection Tech 3 3452 29 30

Sr. Nuclear Reactor Operator 3751 24 27

Thanks for all the work you did to demand respect for the critically important work you do every day.




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