20, No. 17, April 5, 2001
Board's ruling shapes hearing on
The Illinois Educational
Labor Relations Board issued a ruling March 27 that would presumptively
exclude most teaching assistants and research assistants at the UI from
eligibility for a proposed labor union. This presumption could be rebutted
for individuals or classes of assistants.
The board approved preliminary guidelines that would determine eligibility
for voting in a union election. The next step is a hearing before an
administrative law judge.
The board had ruled three years ago that graduate assistants were students
and therefore, by law, not eligible to unionize. That ruling was reversed
by a state appellate court, which said students should be excluded from
union eligibility if the work they performed was so tied to their academic
pursuits that unionization would be "detrimental to the educational