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Staff Senate current issues

Current Issues

These are some of the issues that Staff Senate is currently addressing. If you have concerns or questions that are not addressed here, we encourage you to email us at

Current Resolutions

To view current and past Staff Senate Resolutions, click here

Staff Newsletter

To read the Staff Newsletter, click here.

To view the answers to staff questions that we've published in previous newsletters, click here.

To view previous editions of Policy Corner, click here.

Employee Wellness Resources

Staff Senate has received questions about wellness resources that are available to UW employees. After a little bit of research we have located the following resources to share with you:

  • Health and Wellness Newsletter from Cigna

  • Cigna Wellness Coaching brochure

  • Cigna Lifestyle Management Program information

  • Each employee and their household members have access to a total of 4 free and confidential coaching sessions per year to help reach individual wellness goals through the University's Employee Assistance Program offered by Mines & Associates. This wellness program is URAC accredited and each professional wellness coach is board-certified. Coaches will help assess current wellness needs around a variety of topics, help set specific wellness goals, and do regular progress checks to help answer questions along the way to help reach wellness objectives. Topics can include weight loss, fitness, nutrition, healthy habits, stress, health concerns, caffeine reduction, injury recovery, physical training, relationship development, sleep issues, smoking cessation, and more. To learn more about Mines & Associates programs, and for information about logging in, click here.

Employee Handbook

At the September 2016 Board of Trustees meeting, the Board approved review by UW Administration of UW’s current regulatory structure, to include the following:

  1. Phasing out presidential directives;

  2. Defining regulation versus policy/procedure;

  3. Creating a new “look” and format for the regulations; and

  4. Updating the substance of the regulations, policies, and procedures as needed, including determining whether there are any substantive gaps.

This regulatory review policy is currently underway. As each regulation or policy is revised, Staff Senate receives a copy of the proposed revisions and has an opportunity to provide feedback before the document is finalized. Staff Senators do their best to solicit staff feedback and present it in a constructive way during each revision process.

In the coming months, the Employee Handbook will undergo this same revision process. Staff Senate is aware of a number of issues that UW staff have raised with items in the Employee Handbook. As the Handbook is revised, we will continue to address those concerns, and keep you posted on the outcome.

In addition, numerous current regulations and presidential directives included policies that are more appropriate content for the Handbook. As these policies and regulations are reviewed, Human Resources personnel will work to bring them into the Handbook. During each stage of revision, Staff Senate will receive the redlined version of the documents so that we can provide feedback, and so that we can communicate the final changes to all UW staff.

If you have any questions or concerns about the Employee Handbook or the current policies regarding staff employees, please let us know at or submit them through our anonymous form by clicking here

Staff Compensation and Professional Development

In June 2017 Staff Senate began a conversation with the administration once again on staff compensation. We proposed an updated plan for approaching compensation, updating the salary matrix, and updating our staff classification practices. This proposed plan would work in conjunction with the new budgeting process and with the new University strategic plan. To view our recommendations from June 2017,  click here.

In September 2017, President Nichols convened a Salary policy Task Force to address the issue, and two Staff Senate representatives participated in that Task Force. The recommendations of the Task Force were sent to President Nichols on November 1, 2017, and presented as an information item in the November meeting of the Board of Trustees. In the March 2018 Board of Trustees meeting, the board voted in support of the finalized salary policy. To view the final version of the salary policy, click here.

In June 2018, the Board of Trustees voted to approve the proposed FY 19 University budget. This budget includes an allocation for salary increases, to be distributed according to the new salary policy. To read more on how this increase will be administered, click here.

In 2017 Staff Senate also prepared a proposal to address staff professional development. This proposal is available here. The proposal was sent to President Nichols in November 2017. While the University's executive committee declined the proposal presented by Staff Senate, there is strong agreement that providing and facilitating staff professional development opportunities is a top priority. Staff Senate will continue to work to expand the opportunities available to UW staff and to share the information we receive on professional development opportunities with you.

FCAC Committee and Strategic Planning Council

Staff Senate elected two senators to represent UW staff on the Financial Crisis Advisory Committee. The committee has wrapped up its work, and the committee's recommendations were brought before the Board of Trustees in the November 2016 meeting for approval.

Staff Senate also nominated two senators to serve on the UW Strategic Planning Council. As the Strategic Planning Council continues to meet in the coming months we'll keep you posted in the newsletter and by email updates.

Employee Performance Evaluations

Staff Senate has received numerous questions and complaints from staff concerning the Performance Evaluation system. In November 2014 we conducted a staff survey to better inform our conversations with Human Resources. Administrative turnover and scheduling constraints made it difficult for us to address the issues in the timeframe we had hoped. However, with the rollout of the new fiscal and human resources system, Staff Senate hopes to revisit this topic. We have brought the question once again to HR, and we are hoping to work with them to address the issues in the survey as the new HCM system - and a new performance evaluation module - is developed and implemented. To view the results of the survey, click here

Leave Time Taskforce

In 2015 Staff Senate convened a task force to address the issues identified in the Leave Time Survey. The task force included a representative from Human Resources, and working together the taskforce issued several policy bulletins. To read the Policy Bulletins, click here. While this task force is no longer meeting, Staff Senate will continue to work to clarify UW policy and labor law at the request of UW staff. To ask a question or share your feedback with us, send an email to or complete our anonymous survey by clicking here.  

Retaliation, Employee Grievances, and Mediation

The Staff Relations Committee has initiated conversations with Human Resources on the topics of the UW Grievance Procedure and the Anti-Retaliation Policy. As of May 2016, an Anti-Retaliation policy has been added to the UW Regulations and to the Employee Handbook, Section D, Paragraph 5 (p 9).  As we continue to make progress clarifying the policies and working to improve the options available to staff members, we'll keep you updated here and in the newsletter.

It has been brought to our attention that HR no longer offers mediation services, and is generally not available to attend staff meetings. We realize that this is problematic for some staff members who are experiencing conflict, as HR also cannot take action on issues that are brought to them unless there is written documentation. We continue to engage in conversations with Administration to address these concerns. In the meantime, employees who are concerned about changes to their PDQs, changes in their status as Essential Employees or to their on-call rotations, or any other updates to the terms of their employment can obtain documentation of conversations that do not take place in writing in several ways:

  1. An employee is always free to take notes on what is said in a meeting and bring those notes (or any other documentation they feel is relevant) to HR for inclusion in their personnel file.

  2. An employee may request a peer witness to attend the meeting and take notes. The employee can then provide this documentation to HR for inclusion in their file. Contact Staff Senate for more information.

  3. The conversation can be recorded and the recording can be provided to HR in lieu of written documentation. For more information, see the Wyoming State Statutes and U.S. Code, title 18.

  4. If an employee is experiencing workplace bullying or retaliation, or is being informed of significant changes to the terms of their employment, they cannot be prevented from bringing legal representation to meetings.

  5. Following an in-person meeting or telephone conversation with a supervisor, the employee can write an email to the supervisor confirming what was discussed in the meeting. A template for a follow-up email is available here.

Policy Questions

Staff Senate receives numerous questions about labor law and UW policy. We've created Policy Corner to share some resources and information with you that may be of help. The Leave Time Taskforce has also issued some Policy Bulletins addressing specific issues that were identified in the Leave Time Survey. To read the Policy Bulletins, click here.

Other Recent Issues

Employee Assistance Program   

Employee Handbook Update, August 2016

UW HR Evaluation Presentation

Staff Teaching in Academic Units

UW Administrative Information

UW Regulations and Presidential Directives  

University of Wyoming President's Office 

CREG Report    

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