Faculty union gains forward momentum with third negotiation meeting


Rob Le Cates

Members of the University Professionals of Illinois socialize before the negotiation team meets with Eastern’s negotiation team at Booth Library Monday afternoon.

Rob Le Cates, Editor-in-Chief

Lead negotiator for Eastern’s faculty union said forward momentum was gained during their third meeting Wednesday.

Eastern’s University Professionals of Illinois head negotiator, Billy Hung, said it was a standard bargaining session, both sides tackled issues and asked questions.

Both sides tentatively agreed upon three items.

After the second meeting, UPI’s President Jennifer Stringfellow said the process to get the contract signed would be difficult, hoping to get it signed before August.

Hung said it is always the goal to get the contract signed before the start of the fall semester, but knows this is only the beginning.

“Assessing that goal at this stage is not easy,” Hung said. “We know we have some very difficult issues coming up that we haven’t yet addressed such as the compensation rate and those never go easy.”

With a fourth meeting, around two weeks from now, the negotiation team hopes to start a conversation discussing some of the issues and proposals the union brings to the table.

A few members of the union noted there was some pushback from both sides but said it leaned towards them.

“I think both sides have come with the responses and we are looking forward to getting more of the pieces going,” Hung said. 

Rob Le Cates is a sophomore journalism major. He can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected]