UPTE-CWA E-Bulletin: October 07, 2015
Raises for UPTE at UC
On the campuses and medical centers, research (RX) and technical (TX) employees receive a 3% raise effective October 1. This means you will see the raise in your November 1 check for monthly paid employees and your November 4 check for employees paid bi-weekly. This raise was negotiated as part of our current union contract and applies to employees in these bargaining units, and it applies to everyone, including limited appointment, probationary, topped-out and per-diem employees.

Employees at the Lawrence Berkeley National Lab in the TX and RX units will receive a 1% across the board raise augmented by an average of 2.5% based on merit and longevity.

There will be no changes in the amount we contribute to the pension plan. All UPTE members remain on a single-tier that provides for maximum retirement factor by age 60 instead of the age 65 forced on the non-union new hires.

Health care professional (HX) members will receive their 2% raise and step increases effective January 1, 2016. All medical centers except Irvine have also won a lump-sum payment in lieu of a step increase for topped out employees over the last year.

Administrative professionals pushed for a 4% raise and won 3% raises. This shows a lot of great organizing power! However, since we do not have the right to bargain for this group, campuses and even departments have divergent methods for allocating this raise, some more fair than others.

Whom Should We Support For President?
Our national union, the Communications Workers of America, has set up a website poll to determine what presidential candidates our members support. The website includes the responses, if any, of the candidates to a list of issues posed by the AFL-CIO.

UPTE-CWA has jumped out in front of this process and has endorsed Bernie Sanders. Sanders has created a groundswell of support by paying attention to working people's issues. His entrance into the race has already resulted in a significant shift, and has spotlighted the need to make higher education more affordable. Hopefully, his positions on a minimum wage increase, growing income inequality, Medicare-for-all and other progressive changes will also move the debate away from Clinton’s emails and denying climate change to topics that affect working people and our families.

Despite our early endorsement, UPTE-CWA encourages all our members to carefully review and consider the positions of all the candidates.

When participating in the poll, you do NOT need to enter the last four digits of your social security number. Alternatively you can use the last four digits of your UC ID. Also the poll asks for your local number. We are local ‘9119’ of CWA.

Support Public Service, Public Unions and UPTE

The first and most ardent defenders of public services -- from schools to parks -- are those who provide them. We know that the 99% of Californians who work for a living rely on our commitment, whether we are firefighters, educational workers or highway engineers.

The Supreme Court case attacking public sector unions’ rights to collect “fair share” fees will undermine our advocacy for the public services that everyone relies on. While we have little influence on how the Supreme Court justices will decide in this case, we can take the preventative step of signing up all employees in our bargaining units as members of the union prior to the issuance of a decision.

At the same time, we seek to augment our influence with key legislators in Sacramento by increasing the amount of our contributions to our Political Action Fund, the money set aside for electoral support for key lawmakers.

If any non-members work beside you, please ask them to fill out a membership form and email it in.
The UPTE E-Bulletin is prepared by UPTE-CWA President Jelger Kalmijn. If you have any questions or comments, please do not hesitate to write him at president@upte-cwa.org.