Published: May 29, 2020

Proposed Letter of Agreement

UO Voluntary Work Share Program

This agreement is between the University of Oregon (University) and the SEIU Local 503, OPEU (Union).

Due to the budget impacts resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic and in order to avoid layoffs, the parties agree to jointly allow for individual classified employees to voluntarily reduce their hours between 20-40% per work week if they are deemed eligible to participate in the Oregon Work Share Program. 

To be eligible for the Program an employee must be eligible for unemployment benefits and must have worked for the University for six (6) months for full time employees and twelve (12) months for part time employees. Bargaining unit members who become eligible for Work Share after the start of the program may enter the program later.

Work Share Program:

The Work Share Program, administered by the State of Oregon Employment Department (OED), allows employers and employees to address economic challenges by allowing a reduction in the amount of time employees work each week between 20-40%, with employees receiving unemployment compensation for the period of time that their work is reduced.

In order for an employer to participate in the Work Share Program they must have approval of the Union that represents the impacted employees, including the signature of an authorized agent of the Union on the application. The University will promptly apply to participate in the Work Share Oregon program. The Union will cooperate with the University in completing the application.

The program is intended to run over the summer from June 14 to August 14. If the employee wishes to continue on the program beyond August 14, they can do so with departmental approval, based on operational needs. 

The employee may elect to have either a 20% or a 40% reduction in their weekly work hours, subject to supervisory approval based on operational needs. The reduction will normally be taken in full day increments on either end or the employee’s work week unless otherwise mutually agreed to by the employee and their supervisor. Work Share Employees must timely complete required forms for the program as communicated by UO’s Human Resources Department.

Employees shall continue to receive eligible accruals based on their FTE prior to the reduction in hours. Work Share Employees currently eligible for health care and retirement benefits will maintain those benefits and eligibility based on their FTE prior to the reduction in hours.

While on Work Share, should an employee need to use accrued leave their supervisor will, whenever practicable, allow the employee to flex their time to stay within Work Share eligibility for the week. If they are unable to flex their time to maintain eligibility for the Program the employee will be allowed to use the appropriate paid leave for that week up to forty (40) hours or up to whatever their normal scheduled hours were prior to the reduction.

The University will allow Work Share and Extended Benefits Employees to attend presentations held jointly by the Union and University about the programs during worktime. 

This agreement does not set a precedent for future employment actions or negotiations. 


Service Employees International Union, Local 503, OPEU

_____________________________________ Dated: _________________________

Melissa Unger

Executive Director 


University of Oregon


_____________________________________ Dated: _________________________

Missy Matella
Senior Director, Employee and Labor Relations