UofM research assistants file suit against MERC

Three of the graduate student research assistants who wished to join the Graduate Employees Organization at the University of Michigan filed suit in U.S. District Court this morning.

The GSRAs are challenging the constitutionality of Public Act 45, a law that was hurriedly passed earlier this year, which that research assistants are not state employees, and cannot then petition the Michigan Employment Relations Commission to hold an election to organize.

The law was passed and signed by the governor before MERC had rendered its decision.

According to the complaint, filed by Mark H. Cousens for the plaintiffs, the statute deprives the research assistants of their constitutional right to organize and bargain collectively, and it does so “without a rational basis. The classification of a single group of individuals is a discrimination that is not justified in fact.”