Kenyatta congratulates TUGSA on ratified agreement with Temple University

PHILADELPHIA, March 13 – Temple University Graduate Student Association has come to an agreement with Temple University on a ratified agreement on a new contract.

TUGSA members have been on strike for six weeks fighting for a living wage and much more.

State Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta, D-Phila., who represents the legislative district that Temple’s part of, and is an alum of the school, organized a rally in support of TUGSA in February. He issued the following remarks on the agreement:

“TUGSA members help make Temple University the great institution that it is, and so it was right and just for them to demand fair pay and benefits. Temple will be a better place because they choose to agree to a fair deal and be on the right side of this issue,” Kenyatta said. “I am incredibly proud of the TUGSA members, who stood together over the past six weeks. It’s truly amazing to see the righteous and courageous stance they took finally pay off.”

Here are some details about what TUGSA won in this ratification:

  • Wages: TUGSA won a significant initial bump and raises in subsequent years over the life of the contract. TUGSA also eliminated the unequal pay-tier system: all teaching and research assistants will receive the same pay regardless of their academic discipline.
  • Dependent Care: TUGSA won a partial subsidy for dependent health care. This is a first in TUGSA’s 20-year history. Kenyatta said this win is an important step towards Temple recognizing the needs of workers with families.
  • Leave Policies: This agreement provides necessary increases to paid parental and bereavement leave, including specific allowances for international travel.
  • Working Conditions: New language in the grievance procedure makes TUGSA stronger in its ability to organize and defend its members from overwork, discrimination and harassment.