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February 21, 2008 - Image 2

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The Michigan Daily, 2008-02-21

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2A - Thursday, February 21, 2008

The art of negotiation

Graduate student instructors
gathered in Haven Hall yes-
terday to hold a grade-in as a
protest to draw attention to the
Graduate Employees' Organi-
zation's ongoing contract nega-
tions with the University. But
this wasn't the first time that a
group of gradoate students have
hounded together for a cause.
The Graduate Employees
Organization is a labor union
established in 1970 to lobby the
University on the behalf of grad-
uate students.
Every three years, the union
renegotiates its contract with
the University.
About a year before the cur-
rent contract is set to expire,
onion members begin hold-
ing meetings to compile a list
of changes or additions for the
next contract. The union then
appoints a bargaining team to

meet with University officials
and negotiate the new contract.
The union currently repre-
sents about 1,600 GSIs and staff
The second-oldest graduate
employee union in the country,
the GEO has won important
concessions from the University
during its 37-year history.
As a result of a GEO threat
to strike in 1993, the University
didn'tgo through with proposed
reductions in health care cover-
In 1996, the union successful-
ly campaigned to have the title of
student teachers changed from
teaching assistants to graduate
student instructors.
Doctoral student Patrick
O'Mahen, GEO communica-
tions director, said GED has
been more progressive than the
University by recognizing and

fighting for issues like benefits
for same-sex domestic partners
and resources for teachers with
"We really pushed a lot of
things in our contracts that
were a little bit ahead of their
time, like non- discrimination
language," he said. "We were
protecting gay and lesbian
workers in 1976, 20 years before
the University."
Eackham student Helen Ho,
president of the organization,
said although the group targets
graduate students, it also looks
out for the interests of the Uni-
versity as a whole.
"GEO looks out for welfare of
graduate student employees, but
also for all workers and students
to make University of Michigan
a better place to work, live and
learn," she said.

Graduate Emyloyees Organizotion Presidest Helen He and Dave Deb-
bie, the former president of OtO, talk durint the unionsgrade-in in
Haven Hall yesterday. GED is negotiating a new contract with the Uni-
versity on hehaltuoferaduate student instructors and statftassistants.

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Runner's bag Mountain bike Screening of
stolen at CCRB taken from rack 'China Blue'
WHERE: Central Campus WIHERE: Parking Lot M-15, WHAT: A screening of t
Eecreation Building 1170W Medical Center documentary China Blur
WHEN: Tuesday at about 4 WIHEN: Tuesday at about 2:30 which chronicles worki:
p.m. p.m. conditions at a blue jean
WHAT: A backpack contain- WIHAT: A Huffy Eed Baron tory in southern China.
ing a laptop, cell phone and mountain bike was stolen from WHO: University Union
ocher miscellaneous belong- ,a bike rack near the parking Arts and Programs, Sct
logs was stolen after it was lot, DPS reported. The bike was Organizing for Labor ani
left unattended near the valued at $89.97. Police have no Economic Equality
CCEB's running track, the suspects.WHNToafrm6t
Department of Public Safety p.m.
reported.Gy WHERE: VandenbergR
. altsw p d G mlocker Michigans Union
Wallt swped looted, cell
from backpack poeae Lecture on
WHERE: Angellll im pact of
WHEN: Tuesday at about 1:30 WHERE: North Campus Eec-
p.m. reation Building, Supreme Cou
WHAT: A student reported WHEN: Tuesday at about 9:45
that someone stole his wal- p.m. WHAT: National Public
let from his backpack, DPS WHAT: A cell phone was sto- Eadio correspondent Ni.
reported. The wallet contained len from a gym bagesometime Totenberg will discuss t
$060 in cash, two credit cards last Wednesday, DPS reported. Supreme6 Court's impact
-and an ID. Police have no sun- The bag was left in a locker. we. Teevnpi r
pects. Police have no suspects. and open to the public.

WHO: Institute for
Research on Women and
WHEN: Today at 7 p.m.
WHERE: Mendelssohn The-
atre, Michigan League


fat- Free HIV
[ts testing on
dNorth Campus
WHAT: Free and anony-
Room, moos HIV testing. The clinic
will also be showing the
Black Entertainment Televi-
sion news segment "Stigma:
The Silent Eller."
WHO: Health Promotions
and Community Eelations at
University Health Service
WHEN: Today from 7 to 9
[rt p.m.
WHERE: Media Union,
c Duderstadt Center
on on Please report any error in
e the Daily to corrections@

1Starting in early March,
both northbound lanes of
State Street between Huron
Street and Washington Street
will be closed until the spring
of 2000 due to North Quad
construction. The southbound
lanes will not be affected.
2The men's basketball team
currently boasts the lon-
2gest winning streak in the
Big Ten conference. The team
has won its past three games
and will put its streak on the
line against Minnesota tonight.
3Today marks the 50th
anniverary of the peace
sign. The symbol was
designed by a British textile
designer for a protest at nucle-
ar weapons plant because the
simple circle would look good
on television.



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