Unionization at Bates: Making an Informed Decision

Last Updated: December 8, 2021

On Wednesday, October 13, the college received formal notice from the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) that the petition filed on October 4 on behalf of non-tenured and non-tenure-track faculty, instructors, and lecturers had been withdrawn. The Maine Service Employees Association, SEIU Local 1989, filed a new petition on October 8, seeking to represent all non-tenured and non-tenure-track faculty, as well as all staff at Bates, who are not managers, confidential employees, guards, or supervisors. This process will result in a secret ballot election among eligible employees, likely in early to mid-November. 

The National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) allows both employees and employers to share information openly about what it means to be represented by a union and to express viewpoints, pro and con. In its role as an educational institution and to answer the many questions raised by Bates employees, the college is providing basic information on this site for eligible voters to get a comprehensive and accurate understanding of what it means to be represented by a union, including the employment conditions under which a union operates. The college’s goal is to support every member of our community as they make their decision about being represented by a union.

For many of us, this is new information to process, so we expect new questions will emerge and as they do, the college will update this site regularly.