California State University System To Vote On Authorization Strike Over Salary

Professors, librarians, counselors and other California State University employees are preparing to vote on whether to permit their labor union to call a strike over stalled salary negotiations.

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CFA Statewide Associate Vice President-Lecture Leslie Bryan waits for faculty to come vote whether to strike at Cal State San Bernardino on Monday.

According to releases issued Wednesday and on September 24, the CFA and the California State University (CSU) system Chancellor’s Office are in mediation over salary arrangements for 2015-2016, and the Chancellor’s Office has rejected a five percent General Salary Increase (GSI) and 2.65 Service Salary Increase (SSI) for eligible faculty. The university is offering raises of 2 percent, the same increase all other CSU employees received.

No dates have been set for a possible walkout, and the earliest that one would happen is January, Eagan said. Give me a break, 2 percent?

“During this juncture in the collective bargaining process, it is not uncommon for labor groups to take a strike vote to authorize their leadership to initiate a strike once the collective bargaining process concludes”, Molle said.

CSU said “compensation is a top priority”.

The raises the union is seeking would cost $69 million more than has been budgeted, money CSU already has pledged to increasing enrollment, hiring more faculty, and initiatives to get more students to graduate, Molle said.

With neither side willing to budge on their figures, CFA members are getting ready to vote Monday to legally strike against their employers.

CFA held a one-day walkout in November 2011 at Cal State Dominguez Hills in Carson and Cal State East Bay to protest contracted raises that went unpaid in 2008-09 and 2009-10. Professors in the process of earning tenure made an average of $86,314. “Many of these adjunct faculty and lecturers make “$40,000 after teaching for 20 years-$50,000 if they are lucky”, according to Domingo Forasté.

At Cal State Fullerton, members of the California Faculty Association “mean business”.

Hassan said in his 28 years at the university, strikes have been authorized only twice – both times ending in negotiations.

According to a CFA survey, 60 percent of faculty respondents said they were unable to afford housing in the community where their campus is located.

“I would actually be really proud of them”, CSUS student, Joel Barajas said. “The Chancellor can just say ‘yes, ‘” Wehr said.

“We’re still back in the recession with our wages”, he said.

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“We don’t want to strike”, said Phil Klasky, a San Francisco State ethnic studies professor.

California State University Portfolium Partnered for CSU’s Electronic Portfolio Networks