UPTE-CWA E-Bulletin: July 08, 2008

(1) TX/RX Contract Expired: UC Holding Wages Hostage to State Budget
(2) TX/RX: Pay or Comp Time Survey  
(3) AFSCME Plans Strike   
(4) UPTE-CWA Systemwide Officer Election         

(1) TX/RX Contract Expiration: No Raises, No Contract
The UPTE-CWA bargaining team offered to extend the TX/RX contracts if UC would guarantee that it would not hold our raises hostage to the state budget. UC refused the offer and we have allowed our contracts to expire.

Not extending our contacts pressures UC because it is now legally obligated to retain the “status quo.” No more implementation of new fees like parking rate increases or benefits increases, no more reorganizations, no more shift changes, no more contracting out. Already, UC has backed off on parking rate increases for UPTE-CWA at all campuses, except UC Berkeley. We will be filing an unfair labor practice charge with the Public Employment Relations Board (PERB) soon to put a halt to UC Berkeley’s violation of the “status quo.”

We need to challenge every change UC makes by filing an unfair labor practice charge. Contact your UPTE staff and leaders if you believe become aware of any unilateral change of the “status quo.” See the complete list of possible violations and explanation of the process on our website.

Other important effects of the expiration of UPTE’s contracts include:

  • The “no strikes” clause is no longer in effect and we can build for our own strike if necessary and refuse to cross the picket lines of other unions
  • We no longer have access to arbitration for grievances and have to either use the labor board (PERB) or an internal UC process, depending on the matter being challenged
  • Overtime must be negotiated (see below)

(2) TX/RX: Pay or Comp Time Survey
If you earn overtime, the UPTE-CWA bargaining team needs to know if you want to continue receiving compensatory time off. With the expiration of the contract, UC must now pay for all over time, but we are considering making exceptions in cases where members prefer the comp time. We need your input. Please fill out the overtime survey.

(3) AFSCME Plans Strike
After weeks of tense negotiations with AFSCME service workers, UC continues to refuse the $15/hour minimum wage, offer no raises until the state budget is settled at which time it may or may not give any, and insist on unilateral control over any increases in benefits or pension costs. AFSCME members have now threatened a 5-day strike in the near future to push for a settlement of their contract.

Our TX/RX members and the AFSCME patient care technical workers can refuse to cross a picket line because their contracts have expired. UPTE-CWA will send out notices as soon as we have more detailed information about the days for the strike. Those members who exercise their constitutional right to not cross a picket line, and take leave without pay to attend the strike line, will be eligible for UPTE-CWA strike benefits.

(4) UPTE-CWA Systemwide Election
Nominations will be accepted for the offices of President, Executive Vice President, Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer. Officers shall be elected for a term of three years.

Any member in good standing may be nominated provided the nominee consents. A member may self nominate. Nominations are subject to confirmation by the Election Committee. Nominations will be accepted beginning June 30 and must be received no later than 5PM PDT July 14.

The nomination must include the name of the nominee, local affiliation, and state of qualification (maximum 200 words).

Nominations may be sent to “Attention Election Committee” at the systemwide office by post to UPTE-CWA 9119, 2510 Channing Way, Suite 11, Berkeley, CA 94704; by fax to 510-704-8065; or by email to info@upte-cwa.org.

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The UPTE E-Bulletin is prepared by UPTE-CWA President Jelger Kalmijn for all members.
If you have any questions or comments, please do not hesitate to write him at president@upte-cwa.org . If you wish to have dialogue with other members about UPTE-CWA issues, sign up for our web forum.