State of Negotiations

Updated as of: February 3, 2020

As many applicants are deliberating institutions they plan to rank in the near future, we feel responsible for sharing the progress that has been made in our ongoing contract negotiations. We know that salary, benefits, and culture are high priorities when ranking programs across the country. We also feel that having union representation is a huge strength of the University of Washington, and we are excited and optimistic about the improved benefits we will receive with our new contract. 

UWHA and the employer have tentative agreements on Articles:

  • 4 (Disciplinary Action and Just Cause)
  • 5 (Dues Deduction and UWHA Membership)
  • 8 (Health and Safety)
  • 9 (Housestaff Advisory Committee)
  • 10 (Leave – Bereavement)
  • 14 (Leave – Professional)
  • 17 (Management Rights)
  • 22 (Progression by Training Year)
  • 24 (Subordination of Agreement and Authority)
  • Appendixes I-V

We have seen progress on the following issues:

  • The proposed salary increase from the employer has increased from 0% to 2%, though is still much lower than we hope and expect to receive
  • The committee representation structure to ensure resident representation

Among other items, we continue to fight for:

  • Salary: 4% increase each year, with an increase in base salary
  • A fourth week of paid vacation
  • An increased housing stipend
  • An increased Childcare Fund to supplement childcare costs
  • A fully-supplemented UPASS
  • A no questions asked Safe Ride Home program

Notably, the employer’s current proposals include: 

  • Salary: 2% (90 days after ratification), 2% (starting July 1, 2020), and 1% (starting July 1, 2021) increases for the three year contract
  • Housing Stipend: $2,100/year housing stipend
  • Maintaining 3 weeks of paid vacation
  • $100/year travel allowance

Our initial proposals and supportive data can be found on our website

Having a union to fight for our rights and benefits has brought accountability and power to the voices of our resident and fellow members. Our first contract was ratified in November 2016. In this contract, UWHA was able to win: 

  • significant annual salary increases and a signing bonus
  • new housing and parking stipends 
  • full reimbursement for medical licenses and other required expenses
  • an annual education fund for all residents
  • a childcare fund, administered by UWHA
  • a bike transportation fund, jointly administered both UWHA and GME
  • extended paid leave for residents with serious medical issues
  • increased bereavement leave
  • legal protections to prevent residents from unfairly being disciplined or terminated
  • a fair process that guarantees the right to moonlight for all residents

As employees of the University of Washington, and members of the University of Washington Housestaff Association, we continue to encourage potential candidates to come to our institution; however, we encourage each individual to review the salary, benefits, and program and make their decision based on their individual situation. We feel privileged to work at a university with a strong union and we will continue to fight for the fair compensation and rights of our members.

December 30th Bargaining Session

UWHA and UW Labor Relations (LR) met for the nineteenth bargaining session on December 30th. Articles 5, 7, 11, 14,  21, and 22 were discussed. 

Article 5 (Dues Deduction), both parties have come to agreement, with one remaining issue – regarding, dues that are erroneously taken from employees who are no longer members of the bargaining unit. 

Article 7 (Grievances), language was removed to simplify the notification process. The only outstanding disagreement is in regards to the selection process for an arbitration panel for grievances. 

Article 11 (Leave – Extended), UWHA brought a proposal to clarify language around time taken during PFML and closer align with LR’s most recent proposal. 

Article 14 (Leave- Professional), LR agreed to language allowing for up to 10 days of professional leave per year, additional days can be granted via individual programs. 

Article 21 (Professional Development), UWHA agreed to restructuring the language. If the professional development funds are dispersed as a stipend, then the allotted amount would be increased to reflect the rate at which the stipend was taxed.

Article 22 (Progression by Training Year), LR updated language to closer reflect the UWHA proposal, and included language to give credit for research years and a one-step stipend for those transferring. 

The next bargaining session is scheduled for Tuesday, January 7th from 3:00-7:00pm at Roosevelt Commons West, Rm. 271. UWHA welcomes all members to attend.

December 17th Bargaining Session

UWHA and UW Labor Relations (LR) met for the eighteenth bargaining session on December 17th. Articles 1, 2, and 25 were discussed. 

LR updated their proposal on Article 1 (Childcare) to further reflect the language from UWHA’s counter proposal. LR maintains no increase to the fund. 

Article 2 (Committee Membership & Hospital Committees), UWHA updated language to reflect LR’s language regarding the updates to the GMEC Policy Subcommittee. The two proposals differ in the number of representative seats from UWHA and general residents who are allotted for this committee. UWHA has requested that alternatives are designated for the UWHA positions due to the unpredictable schedules of residents/fellows. Additionally, LR proposes to limit the number of seats available to UWHA. 

UWHA made two major updates to the counterproposal for Article 25 (Transportation). The new proposal contains a simplification to the bicycle fund, that would create a two-tiered stipend, allowing residents who bike commute either <80%, or >80% to request their stipend in advance, reducing the administrative burden on a quarterly basis, in addition to increasing the fund to account for the stipend being taxed. The other point of contention was around the Safe Ride Home program. LR has proposed to transition the approval process to UWHA and cap the fund at $500 (currently there is no cap on funds; however, the program is highly restrictive). UWHA is open to handing the approval process, but proposed a cap of $10,000. Resident/ Fellow safety is of utmost concern, and UWHA is concerned about how quickly the $500 would be used by residents, limiting the safe ride home program for the remainder of the year. 

Additionally, GME gave an update on laundering services. GME has been meeting with departments and the laundry vendor to identify issue areas. Changes are being made to improve the system and reduce turnaround time for laundering services.

Article 10 (Leave – Bereavement) was tentatively agreed and signed.

The next bargaining session is scheduled for Monday, December 30th from 3:00-7:00pm at Roosevelt Commons West, Rm. 271. UWHA welcomes all members to attend.

December 11th Bargaining Session

UWHA and UW Labor Relations (LR) met for the seventeenth bargaining session on December 11th. Articles 1, 2, 10, 11, 12, 13, 15, 18,  22, 23, and newly submitted Articles “Duration” and “Union Activities” were re-proposed. 

Article 1 (Childcare) was updated to reach a closer consensus on matching language between the UWHA and LR proposals. LR maintains a $50,000 childcare fund, while UWHA continues to propose $506,000 to cover childcare expenses for members. 

LR updated Article 2 (Committee Memberships & Hospital Committees) to reflect the most recent changes regarding the GMEC Policy Subcommittee (previously known as the Institutional Resident/Fellow Advisory Committee, IRFAC), with a maximum of two representatives from UWHA. UWHA continues to assert that maximum resident/fellow representative on this committee is essential.

Article 10 (Leave – Bereavement) was updated by UWHA to reflect the most recent LR language. UWHA kept language to be more inclusive of those who necessitate further travel for bereavement.

Article 11 (Leave – Extended), LR added language to their proposal which would clarify that employees can take additional leave in addition to PFML payments.

Article 12 (Leave – Holidays), UWHA updated language to reflect Native American Heritage Day, and kept proposed language to pay out paid personal holidays.

Article 13 (Leave – Miscellaneous), LR increased the amount of parental leave an employee can take to 18 weeks – using a combination of sick leave, personal holiday, and unpaid time off. UWHA still has substantial concerns regarding accommodations made for pregnant residents/fellows. 

Article 15 (Leave – Sick), LR agreed to language to reflect UWHA language on bereavement leave and childcare needs during sick leave. UWHA continues to maintain payout of sick leave at the end of residency. 

Article 18 (Moonlighting), LR updated their language to reflect the UWHA program performance language. 

Article 22 (Progression by Training Year), UWHA updated the proposal to reflect concerns made my LR about the tables being confusing – removing the tables entirely. UWHA continues to assert that members who are required to take a research year, will progress in their program during this time. 

Article 23 (Salary/Stipend), LR updated their salary proposal to be 2% (90 days after ratification, equating to <1% even if immediately implemented), 2% (July 1, 2020), and 1% (July 1, 2021). Additionally, the housing stipend proposal from LR was increased by $100, raising the stipend to $2,100 per year. 

LR brought forth the same counter proposals on Article XX “Duration” and Article XX “Union Activities” as they did last time these articles were discussed.

The next bargaining session is scheduled for Tuesday, December 17th from 3:00-7:00pm at Roosevelt Commons West, Rm. 271. UWHA urges all members to attend.

Upcoming Events


17th – Negotiations (3:00-7:00pm, 4300 Roosevelt Way NE, Rm 271)

19th – UWHA Board Meeting – All Members Welcome! (6:30-8:30pm, UW South Campus Center, Rm 354)

30th – Negotiations (3:00-7:00pm, 4300 Roosevelt Way NE, Rm 271)


3rd – UWHA Member Happy Hour (7-10pm, Location tba)

7th – Negotiations (3:00-7:00pm, 4300 Roosevelt Way NE, Rm 271)

15th – Negotiations (3:00-7:00pm, 4300 Roosevelt Way NE, Rm 271)

28th – Negotiations (3:00-7:00pm, 4300 Roosevelt Way NE, Rm 271)

How much are residents making elsewhere?

UW Labor Relations (LR) recently supplied UWHA with data that was presented to UW Medicine leadership – which we were told was used to influence financial proposals.

UW has self-selected whom they deem to be peer-institutions and collected salary and benefit data. This data is publicly available.

Please Note: This data does not compare cost of living. As you know, Seattle has become increasingly expensive, and continues to be one of the most expensive cities to live in the United States.

Please also Note: Some of the data provided in this table is outdated and reflects salaries from multiple years ago.

November 14th Bargaining Session

UWHA and UW Labor Relations (LR) met for the sixteenth bargaining session on November 14th. Articles 6, 23, 25, XX (Union Activities) were discussed. This was an abbreviated session.

Multiple subjects in Article 6 (Fringe Benefits) were covered including liability coverage, meal reimbursements, white coat laundering, etc. Laundering was discussed in a recent negotiation session, and Hayley Fisher from GME reported back with an update on the process. Many departments are having an issue with this service and GME is setting up meetings with departments and vendors to improve the process. 

The conversation around Article 23 (Salary) continued from last session. UWHA asked various questions about how the institutions on the list given during the last session were chosen, why did the most recent salary proposal not close this gap, and pointed out the multiple numbers were outdated (from previous years), and which actually led to a 5% deficit between current salaries and the average salary of peer institutions. LR continues to stress they want to find a balance between what they can afford and being competitive for trainee compensation. 

LR brought a new proposal on Article 25 (Transportation), which includes creating a fund for the Safe Ride Home program totaling $500 on reimbursement for all residents over a year. Currently, there is no financial cap on the amount spent on safe ride home reimbursements. UWHA has strong concerns about what would happen after the reimbursements hit $500 before the end of the year. 

UWHA moved parts of their newly proposed Miscellaneous article to Article XX (Union Activities) to match LR’s organization. Conversation continued regarding bulletin boards, information requests, and union access to state owned spaces and communication. 

The next bargaining session is scheduled for Wednesday, November 20th from 3:00-7:00pm at Roosevelt Commons West, Rm. 271. UWHA urges all members to attend.