By Kate Selig
Stanford guaranteed pay continuation for directly hired employees represented by Service Employees International Union Higher Education Workers (SEIU) Local 2007 through April 30 on Tuesday, according to University spokesperson E.J. Miranda.
The University had previously guaranteed union-represented employees pay through April 15, according to SEIU Local 2007 President José Escañuela.
The University has not changed its March 16 commitment to pay all directly hired employees “for the time being,” according to Miranda, adding that “There is no difference in how the University views pay continuity for those represented by a bargaining unit.”
The decision follows a wave of student activism in favor of guaranteed pay continuation through the end of the quarter for all workers affiliated with Stanford. University pay continuation policies excluded contracted workers, though the University recently decided to extend pay through May 3 for 56 furloughed kitchen staff employed by Student Organized Services (SOS).
Stanford Students for Workers’ Rights member Shelby Valone said that the University’s decision to not guarantee pay continuation to the end of spring quarter did not make sense given that students would not be returning to campus. She pointed out that peer institutions like Harvard, the University of Chicago and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have committed to paying employees through the end of the term.
“They [Stanford administrators] are doing the absolute bare minimum,” she said. “We find it illogical and irresponsible that Stanford hasn’t yet announced pay continuance through spring quarter.”
Escañuela said that SEIU Local 2007 — which represents employees directly hired by Stanford such as custodians and food service workers — requested an extension of pay continuation through May 3, the date when the county’s current shelter-in-place order is scheduled to be lifted. Stanford countered with the April 30 date, he said.
“I have a feeling they don’t want [pay continuation] to be tied to anything outside of their control,” Escañuela said.
Miranda declined to comment on the University’s decision to not extend its pay continuation guarantee through May 3.
The uncertainty has taken a toll on employees, according to Escañuela.
“We already had all of the affordability issues going in,” Escañuela said. “People still have to pay rents and their living expenses.”
Contact Kate Selig at kselig ‘at’ stanford.edu.