We’re organizing USU with a big dream: to bring together staff all across UM, in every department and every kind of job, into a strong democratic union, and to fight together for dignity, equality, and the improvements we need in our work lives. Now we can take inspiration from our counterparts, patient care staff at Michigan Medicine. Similar to USU, their plan is to unite thousands of workers in a single union, United Michigan Medicine Allied Professionals (UMMAP), that will represent nine groups of workers each with its own union contract.
Last month, UMMAP members’ determination paid off: with the support of a supermajority of Michigan Medicine’s 900 diagnostic imaging professionals, UM management officially recognized UMMAP for that group. Now the imaging professionals have the right to negotiate their pay, hours, and working conditions, and they are already preparing to go to the bargaining table. With more and more staff contributing to help make it happen, we can do the same in USU. Then, through our union, we can achieve improvements in the issues shared by so many UM staff, including discrimination and lack of accessibility, low and stagnant wages, and increasing workloads without recognition or compensation.