News Release

The Brookings Institution and Brookings United Staff Union Reach Landmark Three-Year Agreement

June 28, 2024

Washington, D.C. – The Brookings Institution and its staff union, Brookings United, are pleased to announce the ratification of a landmark three-year Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA). Building on an initial one-year agreement reached in May 2023, this comprehensive CBA underscores and reinforces ongoing efforts to ensure that all Brookings employees are valued, engaged, and supported.

Since September 2021, when Brookings voluntarily recognized a union affiliated with the Nonprofit Professional Employees Union (NPEU), the institution and Brookings United have worked together to maintain a positive and productive relationship. Key provisions of this new three-year agreement include wage increases with set salary floors, extended paid family leave, an enhancement to retirement benefits, and processes to strengthen communication between supervisors and their direct reports.

“We are thrilled to have reached this important agreement with Brookings United,” said Cecilia Rouse, president of the Brookings Institution. “Brookings staff are the bedrock of our institution, the absolute key to our success. This agreement reflects Brookings’ commitment to fairness, equity, and respect, ensuring Brookings is a place where all employees can thrive.”

“We are proud to have secured our first full collective bargaining agreement,” said Naomi Maehr, president of the Brookings United bargaining committee. “This agreement addresses many of our key priorities, including higher salary floors, guaranteed annual raises, increased paid family leave, and an earlier start to retirement contributions. This milestone would not have been possible without years of hard work from countless organizers, bargaining team members, and stewards, as well as the support of our membership who unanimously ratified this agreement.”

“Congratulations to the Brookings Institution and all of our Brookings United members on this monumental contract. I thoroughly enjoyed getting to know this team throughout the bargaining process, and I am proud of the assistance that NPEU was able to offer to our members throughout these negotiations. By coming together around a shared vision for the future, you were able to negotiate an agreement that will have a positive impact on the working lives of Brookings staff for years to come,” said NPEU President Amy Chin-Lai.

As Brookings continues to tackle the most pressing issues of our time, the institution and the union remain dedicated to creating a workplace that continues to attract, engage, and support a talented and thriving workforce.

About the Nonprofit Professional Employees Union:

The Nonprofit Professional Employees Union (NPEU), a local of the International Federation of Professional and Technical Engineers, represents employees at over fifty nonprofit organizations, including Food and Water Watch, the Center for American Progress, and Action Squared. With over a thousand members, NPEU gives nonprofit workers a voice to strengthen their workplaces and continue to do work that makes a difference in people’s lives.

About Brookings

The Brookings Institution is a nonprofit organization based in Washington, D.C. Our mission is to conduct in-depth, nonpartisan research to improve policy and governance at local, national, and global levels.