Equality and Justice for All Resident Assistants sign now

To Bob Jose, the Director of Residential Life
To VP Ed Klotzbier, Vice President of Student Affairs
To Exec. VP Philomena Mantella, Executive Vice President of Enrollment Management and Student Affairs
To President Richard Freeland

This letter is written on behalf of the RAs at Northeastern University by the undersigned. On February 22, 2005 an electronic copy of the RA Contract for 2005-2006 was sent via email to all currently employed RAs. The RAs who have signed this petition strongly urge the administration to shift priorities, and consider the quality of life of those who serve this department, and community with pride. The following are our grievances:

1. RA Staff meetings on Tuesday nights. This prohibits students from joining Model United Nations for class credit, or club status. This also prohibits students from being involved in other clubs and activities on Tuesday nights. We believe it is important for each staff to set their own meeting time and location to accommodate the variety of interests on staff and cultivate a stronger sense of staff appreciation.

2. The term Probation as it is applied to all first year/first semester RAs is inappropriate. Probation has a negative "job action" connotation. Rather than use such terminology, RAs should enter an "evaluation period beginning at the start of their employment and ending one semester following the start of their employment." This slight change will break down any hierarchical imbalances that may occur from beginning new RAs on "probation."

3. The new policy regarding Proctor shifts is damaging to our quality of life for the following reasons. First, it is unreasonable to ask a student, who is responsible for upholding the entire RA contract, to dedicate an eight-hour block of time, twice per month, to proctoring. Although it seems like more work, four hours once per week is more feasible for balancing our time. Second, it is unreasonable for RAs to be required to hold one of those shifts from 11 pm until 7 am, or 11 am to 3 pm. RAs on coop will have a very difficult time meeting this requirement. Additionally, RAs who need to post shifts will have a much more difficult time having them replaced. The RAs who have signed this petition also believe that by requiring RAs to complete a shift, such as the overnight, which is ordinarily compensated at a higher rate than the day shifts, the divide of inequity is deepened. The RAs who work during the day are working Proctor shifts which would pay just over $7 per hour, where the RAs who work at night are working shifts that originally pay over $10 per hour. Although this saves the University $80/per overnight shift, it places a strain on the RAs, which gives them less time building community, and tending to their floors.

4. Our final issue, is regarding compensation inequity. Although all Resident Assistants receive compensated housing and meals, the value of these packages is unequal. An RA in Stetson East's room is of a different value than that of an RA in West Village H. Also, RAs should have an option to opt for a 15 meals/week or even 10 meals/week staff meal plan which includes a greater balance of dining dollars. This would cost the department the same amount. A similar meal plan change was implemented last summer for the Orientation Leaders, and that office may have more information on how this could be possible.

These issues all reflect, what is perceived by many of us, as a shift in priorities for the University. The individual resident assistant still feels as disposable and unappreciated as ever - and we do not fault our departments leadership alone for this. We believe that pressure has been brought forth from the Office of Student Affairs, as well as the Office of Enrollment Management and Student Affairs without adequate consideration to the RAs morale as a staff or individual quality of life.

We, the undersigned, ask that all administrative officials responsible for this contract rethink some of its requirements before it is implemented in the coming days. The Northeastern University RA staff has many talented individuals, who feel overtaxed, overburdened, and disposable. In order for Northeastern to be good neighbors, our Resident Assistants must be able to spend the appropriate time and energy on building community in our halls. This objective should not be hindered by overambitious proctor shifts, strict meeting requirements, compensation inequality, or the derogatory status of new RAs. We urge change, and will be submitting a proposal contract that acknowledges many of these concerns within a short time.

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Latest Signatures

  • 01 December 201550. Jason R
    I support this petition
  • 01 November 201549. Erica T
    I urge the Department of Residential Life to take this seriously. Although the Resident Assistance earn benefits from the position, they do not deserve to be taken advantage of and disrespected in this manner. Current Resident Hall Speare Hall Number of S
  • 19 August 201548. Thomas K
    SGA Senator, NU Resident
  • 01 May 201547. Scott K
    I hope that the administration realizes that loyalty is a two way street, and that if you expect your subordinates to work hard for you, you'd best work hard for them. Current Resident Hall 153 Number of Semesters as an RA Since Fall 03 Fall 2006 Placem
  • 07 March 201546. Romit S
    Starting Aug 2005 Fall 2006 Placement, if known. West Village A
  • 19 December 201445. Tasha B
    I support this petition
  • 05 November 201444. John G
    Vice President for Administration and Public Relations, Student Government Association
  • 07 April 201443. Laura P
    I would like to emphasize my main problem, which involves the proctor shift. Eight hour proctor shifts (especially those during the day or overnight) would result in my neglecting the very reason why I'm at school, whether it be during classes or while I'
  • 03 January 201442. Imanuela C
    The 8-hr Proctor shift policy should be researched more in depth as to how it would affect current RSO employees. It encourages RA's to work overnight shifts. Those have been traditionally alloted for international students, who being limited to only 20 h
  • 30 November 201341. Jennifer B
    I believe that this contract and the main topics at hand are simpIy disappointing. I have never before felt so disposable. I feel as if the department has taken the very reason that we are all RAs (for the benefit of representing residents and being leade
  • 01 October 201340. Victoria Deb
    I support this petition
  • 01 August 201339. Megan N
    I support this petition
  • 30 July 201338. Louise A
    The fact that I have no time to get to the caf 19 times a week and pay a ton for food seems like a huge waste... we accomadate our schedules for the school, Chartwells and NU should work together to figure out something that can accomadate our lives (even
  • 29 July 201337. Nicole H
    My main concern is with the proctoring shifts. I am currently on co-op, work monday through saturday, 46+ hours a week. This type of proctor shift physically would be impossisble for me. As it is now, I find it more than feasible to complete 4 four hour s
  • 12 February 201336. Thomas C
    Eight hour proctor shifts are incredibly unreasonable. Think about Coop students, do you see an eight hour block of time during the week? And how about on weekends, an eight hour protor shift and a twenty-four hour duty shift? Current Resident Hall White
  • 28 June 201235. Allison K
    Being a resident of Smith Hall, I support seeing my RA's proctoring at the same time every week. I think its a great way for them to get to know us, as I have gotten to know my several RA's through their shifts. However, if they were to work 8 hours shift
  • 23 November 201134. Parnel J
    I support this petition
  • 10 October 201133. Finessa S
    I have been an RA for three years: I have been in freshman halls the past two, davenport over the summer, a coference assistant and even at the infamous Simmons. I am graduating and I am sad to be leaving a wonderful group of leaders on our campus. I am a
  • 14 May 201132. Robert Wf
    I support this petition
  • 03 January 201131. Nicholas S
    I agree fully with all that has been said above Current Resident Hall Kennedy Hall Number of Semesters as an RA 2
  • 25 November 201030. Justin D
    I support this petition
  • 16 May 201029. Keith Jd
    This contract is not only unfair to theose returning but to those new hires who have not had ANY training or RA class as in the past. They had no idea what they were committing to during the application process. Having these applicants in the pool that we
  • 11 March 201028. Patrick W
    I support this petition
  • 06 December 200927. Allie H
    I support this petition
  • 15 July 200926. William S
    I support this petition
  • 24 February 200925. Celina D
    Requriing RA's to perform eight hour shifts and the overnight shift was not thought out completely and the health of RA's whom are students first will be severly impacted if forced to do overninght shifts and a full workload. Current Resident Hall White H
  • 27 January 200924. Julie H
    I support this petition

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Hugh PruittBy:
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Petition target:
Northeastern University Residential Life Administration

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