Lorato Anderson, Student Services Advisor III

As much as I love my departments, students, and supervisors, I feel incredibly vulnerable due to my status as an unrepresented worker.  I’ve seen the university lean on that vulnerability — we were expected to shoulder the financial burden of the 2020 extended winter curtailment before we fought back, we were the only workers who did not receive pay increases last year, and we are first on the chopping block for layoffs. At the same time, represented employees received their guaranteed increases and have strong protections that help them focus more on supporting students and less on their own survival. 

Gaining union representation is the clearest way to get the safety, security, and livable wages we need during this tumultuous time and in one of the most expensive cities in the country. I want to focus on finding grants, developing and running my programs, advising students, and supporting faculty — the job I was hired to do — instead of focusing on fighting for unguaranteed “merit increases” that allow me to barely keep up with my rising living expenses. 

I know that UPTE representation will give unrepresented workers more protection, help us gain guaranteed livable pay, and allow me to give my all to the work that I love to do.

- Lorato Anderson, Student Services Advisor III