Press Release


  • Tentative agreement reached after three weeks of a strike by graduate workers at NYU
  • Strike ends, graduate workers return to work including grading student work
  • Ratification of contract will take place by online vote May 17 – 24  

New York, NY: Strikes work.The graduate workers for New York University (GSOC-UAW local 2110) end their strike after three weeks of picketing and over eleven months of bargaining. 

“We stand on the shoulders of giants! This contract builds on the strength that underlies the first contract from 2015, only for which we could make these gains!”

Changes brought to new contract (September 1, 2020 – August 31, 2026)


  • Raise the minimum rate for hourly workers by 30% to $26/hr starting fall 2020, meaning back-dated pay for hourly positions held since that date. This will reach $30/hr by the last year of the contract.
  • Raise (non-STEM) research assistant’s pay 5% starting fall ‘20, then 2.5% annually thereafter.
  • Guarantee 2.75–3% annual increases in total compensation (teaching pay + stipends) to PhD students in teaching positions, including a 3% retroactive raise for ‘20-‘21. 

Working conditions

  • Provide a 7% service bonus for grad workers with semesterly appointments after meeting a 1-semester eligibility requirement (effective fall 2020) or the option between vacation or a 5% service bonus to non-semesterly hourly workers (effective spring 2021).
  • Guarantee appointment letters 21 days before the start of the semester; where positions become available later than 21 days before beginning of semester, appointment letters will be provided no later than 1 day after the beginning of job responsibilities (effective fall 2021).
  • Expand leaves of absence: no less than 7 days of paid sick leave, 3 days of paid bereavement leave and 3 paid personal days that can be used for religious observance or other reasons including visa and immigration proceedings. 


  • Create a new fund starting fall 2021 to cover out-of-pocket health costs, beginning at $300k and increasing to $700k by the last year of the contract.
  • Increase coverage of healthcare premiums from 90% of the Basic plan to 95% of the Basic or Comprehensive plan for non-fully funded graduate workers.
  • Extend our dependent healthcare premium support fund to include master’s students’ dependents, while also increasing the size of the fund, and extending the maximum dependent premium subsidy from 75% to 90%.
    • Fund will be 200k beginning AY ‘20-21, 225K; ‘20-’21
    • Unused fund amounts from ‘19-’20 can be used to cover dental expenses incurred between March 11, 2020 and August 31, 2020 that occurred due to the closure of Stu-Dent due to the COVID-19 pandemic 
  • Guarantee that NYU will notify GSOC of any changes to the student health plan(s) no fewer than 30 days before changes take effect, where practicable

Family benefits

  • Guarantee 6 weeks paid parental leave for all graduate workers after one semester of employment
  • Double the size of our childcare fund to $200k beginning spring ‘21, and more than triple the fund by the end of the contract to $325k
    • Remove age eligibility restrictions on fund (previously only open to parents of children under 6 years of age) 
  • Provide access to Bright Horizons  Enhanced Family Supports benefits (effective fall 2021) 
  • Commit to the university considering the expansion of fertility treatments currently available through the student health insurance plan to include benefits provided under the NYS Infertility Mandate, including three rounds of in vitro fertilization 

International and immigrant workers

  • Mandate sanctuary protections from ICE and other government agencies for ALL NYU community members
  • Create a tax and legal services fund for international and immigrant student workers beginning in fall ’21; fund will begin at $10k in fall ‘21 and reach $20k by end of contract
  • Commit for NYU to have three (3) meetings in an academic year with representatives from GSOC, Office of Global Services, University Human Resources, and Wasserman to address international graduate employees’ working conditions 

Health and safety

  • Recognize NYPD presence on campus as a health and safety issue 
  • Convene a health and safety committee at least three times in the next 6 months where we’ll continue to push the demand for cops off campus

Equity and inclusion

  • Eliminate timelines for filing grievances pertaining to discrimination and harassment and include commitment to NYU’s anti-discrimination and harassment policy in our contract 
  • Create a committee to address power-based harassment in the workplace
  • Enable GSOC to file grievances regarding affirmative action and workplace accessibility

Group legal plan

  • Provide access to a group legal plan offered to other NYU employees at a rate of $16.50 per month; legal plan covers some immigration legal assistance, adoption legal costs, and other legal services (effective September 2022)

Union operations

  • Provide bargaining unit lists (important for organizing!) to GSOC within 30 days of the start of the semester, and then once a month thereafter 

Photo/Video/Infographics: View our Google Folder Here.

About GSOC-UAW 2110: In 2001, the Graduate Student Organizing Committee (GSOC), part of United Auto Workers Local 2110, became the first recognized union of graduate employees at a private university in the United States. We are a member-run union of over 2,000 NYU teaching assistants, adjunct instructors, research assistants, and hourly workers. Our last collective bargaining agreement was signed March 9, 2015, on the deadline for a worker strike. Twitter: @gsocuaw Instagram: @nyu_gsoc_uaw