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University of Missouri argues graduate students are not employees ahead of hearing

The curators of the University of Missouri filed their memorandum of law in support of its motion that “Coalition of Graduate Workers” are considered students, not employees.

According to the motion, the graduate workers requested an election for the graduate workers on its campus to determine whether or not they wanted to be represented by the Coalition of Graduate Workers as their exclusive bargaining representative for purposes of collective bargaining.

The university denied the request and said that the students were not considered employees.

The university lawyer stated in the lawsuit that the university would have potentially adverse impacts to education policies if they allowed graduate workers to be considered employees and joining a union could create difficulties for the school to uphold the principles of academic freedom.

The university ends the lawsuit by saying that the graduate employees, should not be defined as employees because the students primary goal is to complete a degree and the work done by the students is because of their degree program.

The Coalition of Graduate Workers filed their argument on Oct. 30.

The hearing is scheduled for April 2018.

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