Penn joined eight other universities on Monday in filing an amicus brief encouraging the National Labor Relations Board not to overturn its 2004 decision. The decision ruled that universities do not need to recognize graduate student labor unions, according to Harvard Magazine.
In 2004, the NLRB ruled in a case brought by students at Brown University, along with the United Auto Workers, that graduate students are primarily considered students of their universities, not employees.
Students at Columbia University and The New School have both recently brought cases to the NLRB arguing for the right to unionize and receive collective bargaining rights. The NLRB recently invited submission of amicus briefs in the Columbia University case.
The amicus brief, filed by all Ivy League institutions except Columbia along with Stanford and MIT, states that collective bargaining has a “burdensome and disruptive effect…on graduate education” and intrudes into “long protected areas of academic freedom.”
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