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Grad students at MU discuss unionizing

Some University of Missouri student employees say they’re still not being treated fairly and their demands are being ignored.

Graduate student employees’ health insurance coverage was suddenly revoked in August of last year. As students protested, the insurance was quickly reinstated but that hasn’t solved the student employees’ concerns.

The Forum on Graduate Rights and the Coalition of Graduate Workers say insurance is just one of a number of problems it has with the university and the UM System.

Among other things, the group says it wants student teachers to be insured, paid a livable wage, receive full tuition waivers and have more student housing and daycare options for student parents.

The daycare was eliminated with the demolition of University Village.

Eric Scott is with the Coalition of Graduate Workers and is a steering committee member of the Forum on Graduate Rights. He says students are aware that the university is in a state of transition, but says that’s no excuse to not to do what the group says needs to be done. He says, “I don’t think because they have an interim in front of their titles means they shouldn’t do the right thing. And, the right thing is to pay attention to what their employees are demanding.”

He says unionizing is the only way to ensure their demands are met and sustained.

We’ll continue to follow this story and have responses from the university, but campus offices were closed Monday for the holiday.

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