Protecting the rehire pool…When administrators at Oakland’s Laney College chose not to rehire part-time sociology professor and Peralta Federation of Teachers Part-time Faculty Representative Cynthia Mahabir, and two other members of the Part-time Faculty Rehire Preference Pool, the faculty rallied quickly.
Instructors delivered a petition with over 250 signatures to the college president demanding that the college honor the contract and reinstate the part-time faculty members.
The rehire pool offers veteran part-timers who have been favorably evaluated — like Mahabir, a 17-year Laney veteran — a measure of job security. The administration’s move to strip pool members of their positions without reasonable justification or due process violates the intent of the contract.
Motivated classified… Three years ago the Berkeley Unified district presented the classified union a contract proposal containing dozens of takeaways. Plus the bus drivers and maintenance workers unit joined the Berkeley Council of Classified Employees so the union wanted to merge two contracts and create uniform compensation and working conditions.
Using a CFT Strategic Campaign Initiative grant, the local hired an organizer and expanded worksite mobilization. Hundreds of members leafleted parents and rallied at the district office with teachers.
Last month members voted overwhelmingly to reject the district’s last, best and final offer. When the parties reached agreement on October 1, the union made no major concessions, raised everyone’s benefits and working conditions to the same level, won a raise and an increase to the district’s benefit contribution.
Turning up the heat… Petaluma teachers have not had a cost-of-living adjustment in seven years. So the Petaluma Federation of Teachers, representing more than 425 teachers, counselors, psychologists, and nurses in the city schools, turned up the heat.
They leafleted parents, asking them to contact the school board in support of a decent contract. Scores of teachers attended board meetings and demonstrations in the normally placid streets of this North Bay rural community, protesting district administration foot-dragging in collective bargaining.
“We’re not asking for more than the district can cover,” said Sandra Larsen, chief negotiator for the union, which proposed a 4 percent increase. The administration is offering 2.5 percent. The union contends that the administration is sitting on increased funding from Proposition 30, and the money should be used for long overdue raises and to decrease class sizes.