|Union Builder Communicator: September 08, 2008|
State Budget Fight Continues & UC Begins Layoffs
Republican lawmakers have taken advantage of this economic crisis in the state to target countless health, education and other service programs for cuts. Over the weekend, Republicans once again raised their proposal to eliminate the 8-hour work day as well as state-mandated meal and break periods. The California Federation of Labor has set up a website to protest this proposal, which would bring us back to nineteenth century labor conditions. As the budget requires a two-third’s approval from the legislature, this ideologically driven minority can hold the state hostage.
Governor Schwarzenegger needs to focus on bringing Republican lawmakers to a budget compromise instead of cutting critical state services and lambasting lawmakers for the impasse. From this point on, not only do our members face their loss of employment, but many of the most vulnerable and needy Californians will be cut off with unavoidably disastrous consequences.
UPTE Defends Team Member While Pushing for Progress in TX/RX Bargaining
UC continues to maintain its position that our wage increases must be conditioned on what happens with the state budget, even though less than 10% of UPTE’s techs (TX) and researchers (RX) are paid from state funds. This means that UC will most likely be proposing a 0% pay increase. From UC’s current negotiations with the California Nurses Association, we have learned that UC wants a 12% of payroll contribution to the pension plan starting July 1, 2009 and that it refuses to say how much health benefits will cost in 2009. This adds up to a pay cut even before we factor in the increased cost-of-living we are all experiencing.
Instead of keeping the focus on developing a fair compensation proposal that UC can afford, UC has forced UPTE to defend our second UC Berkeley bargainer from retaliation for participation in the bargaining process. UC Labor Relations continues to insist that the faculty members or organizational unit where an UPTE bargainer is employed must continue to pay for their salary even when they are in bargaining. UPTE is filing an unfair labor practice charge with the state labor board arguing that the Psychology Department at UC Berkeley retaliated against UPTE bargainer Paul Haller by laying him off. A simple solution would be to set up a separate administrative fund to cover these costs – but UC rejected that. After spirited public actions and legal challenges, Paul Haller has gotten another job at UC Berkeley, but he will not be able to continue as the UPTE bargainer.
Expired Contract Pushes Back Parking Fee Increases
Keep your eyes open for any other “status quo” violations. We will file an unfair labor charge with the board to stop implementation. You can get a complete description of the process and examples of other violations of the status quo on our Bargaining Unfair Labor Practice Fact Sheet.
AFSCME Members Motivated to Press on with Demands for Fair Pay
AFSCME members remain indignant and mobilized, and will continue to push UC until a fair contract offer is on the table. As students come back for fall, AFSCME will gear up its actions again. UPTE supports AFSCME’s demands and strongly encourages members to come out and participate in AFSCME events. Not only do the service and patient care technical deserve a decent raise, whatever they get will have a great impact on what we can get.
Single Payer Health Care Bill Passes Legislature and Goes to Governor’s Desk
The governor has in the past opposed this kind of reform and so needs to hear our support for this opportunity to solve our health care crisis. Call his office today and let him know you support single payer health care, S.B. 840 authored by Sheila Kuhl.
For more information on this bill and other health care basics, review UPTE’s primer on health care.
UPTE-CWA Election Results
A total of 589 valid ballots were counted, with three observers present for part or all of the time. A total of 37 ballots that were received by the deadline were deemed to be ineligible or void. The results of the vote tally of the valid ballots are as follows:
Any challenge to the conduct of this election must be filed with the Election Committee WITHIN TEN DAYS of this notice. The written notice must be specific as to the provisions of the UPTE-CWA election code that are alleged to have been violated. The Election Committee shall rule on any such challenges and shall, within 20 days of this notice, make a final determination or certification.
Stewards Tip: UC Must Follow Law That Protects Victims of Sexual/Domestic Assault
In a recent case, UC San Francisco’s campus human resources department claimed that UC did not have to comply with state labor law and therefore would not provide this law's protections.
UCSF’s disability manager, in conjunction with the campus’ director of Center for Gender Equity (whom UPTE contacted; each campus has one) was able to obtain an unpaid leave for the duration of the physician's requested accommodation. See our Steward’s Tips website for more details on this issue and the case that brought it to our attention.
Last issue's winner was Christina Gonzaga of UCSF. Congratulations!
|This e-publication was prepared by UPTE-CWA President Jelger Kalmijn. Contact him if you have any questions or comments. If you wish to be removed from this list, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.|