Protesters gather outside president’s office – RSS Results in campus*/* of type article DEKALB — Protesters chanted and marched outside of Altgeld Hall Nov. 20 to protest a contract negotiation process they feel has been unfair because of actions carried out by NIU’s bargaining team.The rally was organized by the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees District 31 Local 1890, which represents support staff. Members of the union have been negotiating with NIU for a new contract since February 2016, according to a Nov. 10 letter from union spokesperson Sara Dorner to Jesse Perez, NIU Labor Relations director.“The workers would like to be heard by the administration,” Dorner said. “Right now, the administration is simply not listening to them.”
Dorner said the goal of the rally was to encourage the university to negotiate a deal.“We would like the employer to sit down, negotiate a fair contract in good faith, to follow the law and respect workers,” Dorner said.Dorner and several others spoke at the rally, during which Dorner said the frustrations between the school and the union have grown personal.“Given the fact that many of them have not seen wage increases in over seven years, it’s getting difficult for them to stay at NIU, which means NIU stands to lose experienced workers with talent and dedication that contribute to the success of the university,” Dorner said.Several protesters carried signs calling for NIU to bring new negotiators to be involved in the bargaining process after Dorner accused Perez and the university of showing a “lack of respect,” according to the Nov. 10 letter.Perez has often come to bargaining meetings on his own, with the exception of his assistant joining him at recent meetings, Dorner said. Dorner believes the solution is for NIU to bring more negotiators to the table to meet with the union’s bargaining unit.“We would like him to bring someone else to the table that he …

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