AFSCME Wins Advisory Ruling Against NIU Parking Hike

Aug 25, 2017

An Illinois state labor board has ruled that its General Counsel should side with a Northern Illinois University employee union regarding the raise of parking pass prices. But the office says it’s not the final word on the case.

Credit niu.edu / afscme.org

The Illinois Educational Labor Relations Board office says the legally-binding decision is expected to come later next month.

NIU raised the price of parking permits by $19 in July 2016. That was after NIU and the newly-formed AFSCME bargaining unit – which includes clerical and administrative professionals – entered negotiations in February 2016.

“All along, this has never just been about parking,” said Sara Dorner, with AFSCME Council 31. “It has been about NIU recognizing their employees and their voice and their duty to come to the table and negotiate about all mandatory subjects about bargaining.”

This is one of two unfair labor practice charges AFSCME filed against NIU, claiming the university is not bargaining in good faith. Dorner says she hopes this will be a wake-up call before the union meets with NIU officials for negotiations on Monday.

“We’re not interested in bargaining against NIU; we’re interested in bargaining with NIU,” Dorner said. “This is supposed to be a collaborative process.”

NIU officials previously said the university does not comment on pending litigation.