CFA Announces October Vote to Take Action, Possibly Strike, Against Long Beach-Based CSU System

Last week, the California Faculty Association (CFA) announced its hosting of a vote among its members, beginning October 19 and running through October 28, to authorize actions that may include a strike in light of what they deem “unsatisfactory” collective bargaining negotiations.

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 faculty rejected a two percent salary increase offered by the CSU Chancellor’s Office last October.

“Our message is clear,” said CFA President Jennifer Eagan in a statement. “CSU management must redirect their misplaced spending priorities and temper their obsession with executive compensation. It is time to put the CSU’s money where it belongs, with the people who teach and mentor students.”

Eagan stated that years of stagnant salaries have placed pay for faculty within the CSU system behind the cost of living in California and behind colleagues at the University of California system, within community colleges and K-12 education.

“The lion’s share of faculty hiring in the CSU is into temporary, low-paid teaching jobs that do not offer a middle-class living,” Eagan said in the statement. “This situation is unsustainable and intolerable.”

In July, the CSU Board of Trustees approved a two percent raise for the CSU Chancellor Timothy White and the system’s presidents. Shortly after, the board and the CFA reached an impasse in salary negotations. The state appointed a mediator for negotiations to continue.

The CFA maintained that a CSU-approved two percent GSI for faculty ended up being insignificant when compared to a two percent raise for management, which averages to be about $6,000 more per year. Faculty had appealed for a larger GSI raise, as well as a 2.65 percent Service Salary Increase (SSI) for eligible faculty.

“The CFA and CSU bargaining teams have been meeting since May regarding salary negotiations,” Laurie Weidner, CSU assistant vice chancellor of public affairs, told the Post in July. “The parties could not reach agreement.”

The vote on faculty action will take place online and in-person at all California State University system campuses, according to a release issued Wednesday. 

Above, left: file photo. 

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