There's a lot of to know! And we want you to find what you're looking for. Below, we've made an alphabetical index of popular subjects. We've tried to summarize in plain English some complicated subjects, and provided references where you can find the specific, detailed language in The SHARE-UMass Memorial Contract Agreement. 

We also revisit many of the most popular subjects on the SHARE blog, updating the information as we go along, and explaining useful background in greater detail.

Of course, for help with any question, you can always contact your local SHARE Rep, or the SHARE office (508-929-4020).


If you are absent for multiple shifts in a row, they are counted as one absence or "occurrence." For a full-time worker, 5 or more of these absences in a 6 month period is considered grounds for discipline. If you work fewer than 40 hours in a week, see page 48 of the contract for details about the cap on absences in a 6 month period. 


There are two different ways SHARE members might accrue time--in a single "Earned Time" bank, or in two separate "Vacation Time" and "Sick Time" banks, also referred to as "Traditional Time." SHARE members accrue hours in their bank(s) for every week they work, with rates that correspond to their years of service at UMass and their weekly number of scheduled hours. Detailed description of the accrual system begins on page 64 of the contract.


Our contract grants bereavement time-off-with-pay in the case of a death. Bereavement time includes up to 4 shifts in the case of an immediate family member (the employee’s spouse, parent, stepparent, child, stepchild, sibling, step-sibling, grandparent, grandchild, mother-in-law, father-in-law, fiancé, and any resident of the employee’s household). Up to 2 scheduled work shifts may be taken in the case of an extended family member (the employee’s aunt, uncle, niece, nephew, great-grandparent, sister-in-law, brother-in-law, step-grandchild, daughter-in-law, son-in-law, spouse’s grandparent, spouse’s grandchild, spouse’s great-grandparent).  Bereavement time should generally be taken within 6 days of the death. For complete details, please see page 48 of the SHARE contract.


SHARE members are entitled to a progressive discipline process that emphasizes problem-solving and opportunities for improvement. SHARE members are also entitled to union representation throughout the discipline process. Managers are encouraged to hold "coaching" sessions with SHARE members to have informal discussions about performance issues before entering into our formal discipline process. The SHARE process involves 5 steps:

  1. Counseling

  2. Verbal warning

  3. Written warning

  4. Final written warning/suspension

  5. Termination

Read more about the disciplinary process, including expectations for managers, starting on page 74 of the contract.


The SHARE contract provides a Tuition Reimbursement policy. Also, be sure to keep your eye on the SHARE blog for educational opportunities, including exclusive programs for union members, such as AFSCME's free college program.

Emergency Time

This refers to a policy we've negotiated to help you on days when you're in a pinch . . . those days, when, unfortunately, your cat is very sick, or your dishwasher goes berserk. Personal Emergency Time can be deducted from your earned time/vacation bank, and provides two days of time (for full-time employees) per year. As with any absence from work, it's important to give your supervisor as much notice as possible. Also, be sure to be clear that you're using Personal Emergency Time. Not all managers will be familiar with the idea, so, after the crisis has passed, you may need to share the contract language (on page 47).

SHARE members may use up to 2 days from their earned/vacation bank for personal emergency without prior notice in a calendar year.

health Insurance

SHARE members can currently choose from an HMO, a PPO, or an EPO option. UMass Memorial pays 85% of the cost of one plan (usually the lowest cost plan), with SHARE members on that plan paying the other 15%. The dollar amount that UMass Memorial pays for that plan is then applied to the other plans, with SHARE members on those plans paying the remainder of the cost. This applies to full-time and part-time employees, with either family or individual coverage. See page 31 of the contract for full details.


The goal of SHARE and UMass Memorial is to give as many people the day off for the holiday without loss of pay as possible while meeting the operational needs of departments, and to fairly compensate SHARE members who have to work the holiday since the hospital is a 24/7 operation.

The SHARE holidays are: New Year's Day, Martin Luther King Day, Presidents Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Columbus Day, Veterans Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas Day.

See page 59 of the contract to understand how holiday start- and end-times are defined.

Layoffs and work/income security

UMass Memorial is making a big commitment to retaining SHARE members. When you feel safe that if your job ends there will be another job for you, SHARE members can focus on helping to improve patient care. The notice period for layoffs is 6 weeks (increased from 4 weeks in our last contract), and a new Income Security period of up to 3 paid months will give SHARE members more time to get training, do temporary internal placements, and find a new job.

In addition, UMass Memorial has committed that no SHARE members will be laid off because of process improvement sponsored by the Labor Management Partnership Council, such as UBTs. SHARE members can feel free to speak up to find ways to make work easier and more efficient, without worrying about innovating themselves out of a job.


SHARE members receive overtime pay (time and a half) for any hours worked over 40 hours in a workweek. Time over 40 hours is measured in 15-minute increments. For SHARE members who work a "standard schedule" of 8 hours or less per day, they will receive overtime for any hours worked beyond 8 hours in a work day. For full details of SHARE overtime guidelines, see page 24 of the contract.


This table breaks down the raises we negotiated from 2016-2018



SHARE members are eligible for a pension and a 401(k) plan. UMass will match your 401(k) contributions at 50 cents to each dollar up to 4% of your pay. SHARE members become vested in the UMass pension after 3 years of service, and are eligible for 401(k) vesting on the first of the month after your date of hire. Read more about retirement benefits on page 33 of the contract. 


SHARE seniority is based on something we call the "adjusted service date of hire," explained in detail on page 83 of the contract. Here is how seniority is used in different scenarios:

  1. Layoffs: When layoffs are necessary, they are done by reverse SHARE seniority.

  2. Accruals: Time-off accruals are based on SHARE seniority.

  3. Competitive seniority in a department: Departments have many different policies and practices about things like picking vacations. How Competitive Seniority in a Department works is negotiable on a department level, and should not change without negotiation with SHARE.

  4. Pension: Pension and 401(k) service credit is calculated differently from other kinds of seniority. Please see the relevant pension documents, or contact SHARE or Human Resources for details.

  5. Other: All other questions of seniority for SHARE members will use SHARE senior

For more information about seniority as well as how we bridge service at UMass and the impact on seniority, see page 83 of the contract.

Time off

Every department has its own system for requesting vacation time, and our goal is for that system to be documented in every department. If your department does not have a written policy, our contract stipulates that a policy will be created through collaboration between SHARE members and managers. Contact your SHARE organizer if you would like to initiate this process.


You are expected to work in a department for at least 6 months before transferring to another department. Exceptions can sometimes be made, through mutual agreement between the old and new departments. SHARE members who transfer retain their SHARE seniority for layoffs and accruals. SHARE seniority becomes a determining factor in hiring decisions for transfers when two candidates are otherwise equally qualified. See page 11 of the contract for more details about transfers.


All departments are encouraged to develop an individualized weather policy and to review the policy each Fall, before the Winter weather hits. Departments which do not have an established practice or individualized policy default to the more general SHARE weather policy, which states that all employees are considered essential. See page 85 of the contract for details. We have also posted a severe weather FAQ which addresses the most common concerns. If you would like help developing or revising the policy for your department, please contact the SHARE office.