Is there a way to stop unwanted visits from union representatives?

Date: November 2016


I’ve heard numerous complaints from my graduate student peers that they are “harassed” by union employees at work and at home. Is there a way to stop these unwanted visits?

– Concerned Graduate Student


Dear Concerned Graduate Student,

Thank you for your question. I’m sorry to learn that you are hearing complaints from your peers regarding being “harassed” by union employees on campus and at home. 

On campus, union representatives are allowed appropriate access to graduate student offices, lounges, and other spaces that are typically occupied by graduate students, but they should not be entering areas designated as restricted, hazardous, containing vertebrate animals, requiring specific safety training, or otherwise entry-controlled without explicit permission from those with authority for the space. 

Graduate students should feel free to accept, reject, or reschedule discussion with union representatives as they wish, or suggest a more convenient time or place, and should certainly feel free to ask union representatives not to contact them at home. 

If you or your peers have asked union representatives to stop contacting you and yet they have continued to do so, you may express your concerns directly to the union by emailing them at or by sending your concerns to the Union-Management Committee, which discusses issues of this type. I hope that this situation resolves for you and your peers so that you may focus your efforts on your own priorities, academically, professionally, and personally.

Warm regards, 


Barbara A. Knuth
Senior Vice Provost and Dean of the Graduate School