Wright State University Press Release
(1-31-19) An article in today’s Dayton Daily News identified health care as the principal issue impacting the negotiations between Wright State University and the AAUP-WSU as they work toward a new contract.
After signaling a willingness to compromise or depart from positions the union has objected to such as layoffs, workload and other issues that might impact the classroom, the Wright State Board of Trustees is hopeful that negotiations may successfully conclude if the union can join the existing health care plan with the rest of Wright State’s employees.
The trustees have consistently communicated the importance of having all university employees join the existing staff and non-bargaining unit health care plan as one of the most important structural changes necessary to moving the university toward financial stability. This plan already includes our employees that are represented by other unions on campus.
Wright State President Cheryl B. Schrader
“We offer every other employee a health care plan that is comparable to other public employers and would be the envy of the private sector.”
“But we’ve also been offering an unsustainable healthcare plan only for bargaining-unit faculty members that’s been increasing in cost at the rate of three times the national average. Operating two separate plans costs us millions of dollars in extra expense to the university’s budget each year.
“We refuse to pass that unnecessary cost on to our students.
“The university is on a path to financial recovery and moving to a single health care plan is critical to realizing our long-term viability.
“Additionally, we have heard very clearly from our staff members and non-union faculty that the university cannot only allow union faculty members to stay on a separate plan because it is an equity issue that does not treat all employees fairly.
“They have also noted the cost of the separate plan for union faculty has been subsidized by all other employees, including non-union faculty members, for years.”
The Dayton Daily News article also highlighted the university’s effort to calm union concerns regarding stability of the coverage.