|UPTE-CWA E-Bulletin: March 11, 2005|
(1) Pledge to Strike for a Career
AFSCME and CUE, representing the service and clerical workers respectively, are also making preparations to strike, since UC refuses to seriously engage in wage negotiations with them as well. AFSCME, CUE and UPTE have made a commitment to work together. Other UC unions have also pledged to participate in any workplace actions.
The University wage offer includes no raises for 2004/05. For subsequent years, its offer remains dependent on legislative approval, even though over 80% of TX and RX employees are not paid out of state funds. UC also insists on deducting from our across-the-board cost-of-living (COLA) increase to pay for step increases, and it continues to divert to other purposes all savings from staff turnover and vacancies. UPTE has made offers to settle the entire contract for three years based on annual step increases with a reasonable cost-of-living adjustment, a proposal that the University has said it can afford.
Many other actions are planned to put pressure on UC, such as informational pickets, legislative hearings and the distribution of flyers at UC events. Your participation will make these events successful. Each UPTE local sends out emails and fliers announcing actions, so please get on your local's list and stay in touch.
(2) Let Your Faculty or Supervisor Know What is Going On
(3) Executive Pay Increases Exposed
Recent San Francisco Chronicle and Los Angeles Times articles exposed these pay increases. Separately, an independent fact-finder's post-impasse report concluded that UC could and should provide increases for underpaid clerical employees. A National Economic Development and Law Center study presents data on how many UC employees do not make enough money to meet the basic needs for even one individual, let alone a family. In contrast, UC's bonus plan for executives provides supplemental pay of up to 20% of base pay for meeting or exceeding performance standards. UPTE and other UC unions will be raising these pay policies and lack of accountability before state legislators, the Regents, donors and other audiences.
(4) Governor Attacks UC Retirement Plan
While defined benefit plans rely on the pooled purchasing power of millions, defined contribution plans like 401Ks are individually-based. Under a defined contribution plan, the University caps its contribution to your retirement, and then you either select how to invest your funds or pull them out to use for other purposes. With the volatile stock market and underpaid employees constantly in need of extra money just to make ends meet, many UC employees will end up with little or no retirement funds.
The proposal would apply to workers hired in 2007 and after, but it would affect all of us dramatically. Current employees would be encouraged to move money out of their retirement plans into the new defined contribution plan. The defined benefit plans for those who have retired or were hired before 2007 would not have any new participants and would dwindle in funding with no new participants. UC and other public agencies have used defined benefit retirement plans as a recruitment incentive for jobs that generally pay less than those in the private sector. The amendment would make public employment less attractive and generate revolving door jobs.
Unions including those representing teachers, state workers and many others will join with UC unions to protect our retirement plan. Please stay informed and be prepared to take action.
Training : UPTE has negotiated 40 hours paid training time per year for all TX and RX employees. UPTE members are eligible for a two-thirds fee reduction for UC classes. Many additional training classes are often provided free of charge, or the cost can be covered with your department's or lab's funds. If you have difficulty getting approval for training time, an UPTE representative can assist you. See the TX , RX , or HX contract for more information.
|The UPTE E-Bulletin is prepared by UPTE-CWA President Jelger Kalmijn for all members.
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