University of Maine campus in Orono in a March 12, 2020, file photo. Credit: Linda Coan O'Kresik / BDN

Graduate student workers across the University of Maine System are taking steps to unionize.

The organizers announced the new campaign Thursday, saying that a union would help workers address existing issues around wages and health benefits, and give them more of a voice at work.

The new union would be affiliated with the United Auto Workers, and would be made up of research assistants, teaching assistants and graduate assistants from across the system.

In an email, a University of Maine System spokesperson said that the system is just learning about the student workers’ concerns, and is “gathering information, and listening.”

The effort follows similar recent union drives at other colleges, including Harvard University and the University of Connecticut.