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Article Labor Solidarity

San Diego County college staffs tackle food insecurity in their communities
Food bank distributions feed thousands of families
PHOTO GALLERY

March 20 was the last day of on-campus classes for about 18,000 San Diego City College students. The college has maintained a food pantry for needy students, faculty and staff, but AFT Local 1931 stepped up the emergency response in September with monthly giveaways.

“It’s joyful to see everyone — students, staff and faculty — come together to help. My happiness was seeing everyone smile,” said Neary Sim, a Guild member and instructional office specialist in the School of Behavioral and Social Sciences.

Article Classified Conference Coronavirus

Virtual Classified Conference educates, unites, entertains
How the pandemic has changed our unions
PHOTO GALLERY

CFT capped an unforgettable year with its first virtual Council of Classified Employees conference. The November 14 online meeting focused exclusively on life with the COVID-19 pandemic.

There were also warm moments of old friends seeing each other, the occasional technical glitch, and a madcap show of goofy eyeglasses.

CCE President Carl Williams welcomed the virtual participants, who appeared in thumbnail windows around the computer screen to be as happy as Williams was to be gathered together — at a distance.

Four new laws classified employees need to know about
From contracting COVID at work to personnel commission changes

Workers’ Comp classifies on-the-job COVID cases as occupational injuries

Senate Bill 1159 (Hill, D-San Mateo) directs the state Workers’ Compensation system to presume that an employee’s COVID-related illness is an occupational injury and therefore the worker eligible for Workers’ Comp benefits if specific criteria are met.

Article Elections 2020 Schools & Communities First

Prop 15 defeated, but our coalition remains strong

CFT members worked so hard to put Proposition 15, also known as Schools & Communities First, on the November ballot and over the finish line right through the close of polling places on Election Day.

But after election day, Prop 15 was trailing by about 400,000 votes with approximately 4 million votes yet to be counted. CFT and campaign allies were optimistic and patient, holding out hope that the measure would amass the votes needed to pass.

Article Elections 2020 Coronavirus

Rallies demand, “Count Every Vote!”
PHOTO GALLERY

The polls closed in Hawaii, the westernmost voting site in the United States, at 1 am eastern time on November 4. At 2:28, less than two hours later, President Trump sent out a tweet announcing that he’d won the election.

Millions of votes had yet to be counted, especially those cast by people voting early because of the coronavirus. But Trump demanded that counting stop, and made false charges of election rigging. He immediately filed suits in Pennsylvania, Michigan and Georgia to stop the count.

Article Elections 2020 Schools & Communities First

Top 5 reasons to vote NO on Prop 22
Make corporations pay their fair share!

Although there are many important races, Voting NO on Prop 22 is one of the most important decisions you can make on the ballot this year. Here’s why:

  1. Uber, Lyft and other giant gig corporations have spent $200 million on Prop 22 in an effort to exempt themselves from all labor laws that protect workers. We’re talking about basic protections like a minimum wage, sick leave, workers’ comp and unemployment insurance. These multi-billion dollar corporations are trying to strip workers of virtually every right we’ve fought decades to enact.

Peralta reaches 100 percent pay parity; locals win distance education support
From course conversion stipends to health benefits extensions

In spite of the pandemic, a number of local unions won big gains for adjuncts, from parity pay to distance education, to the preservation of healthcare for adjuncts with reduced loads. These wins are especially significant at this time in which revenues are falling and concerns over future budgets made many administrators skittish to bargain.

Article AFT Shared governance Part-time faculty

Contingent faculty team up, pass national shared governance policy
AFT Convention adopts resolution crafted by UC and community college faculty

While the COVID-19 pandemic meant that this summer’s AFT Convention had to go virtual, and in turn, resulted in format changes which made schedules tighter, and the work of those attending harder in many respects, one of the great achievements for CFT was the passage of a resolution calling for the right of contingent faculty to participate in shared governance.

Article Schools & Communities First

Prop 15: It’s not just about closing corporate tax loopholes
It’s about protecting adjunct faculty too!

California is at an educational crossroads made dire by the coronavirus pandemic, and Proposition 15 is an important step in getting California back on the right track.

COVID-19 has not only ravaged the health and lives of countless Californians — it has also ravaged state revenues, with Governor Newsom himself acknowledging overall state revenue declines being in the “tens of billions.”

Article Workers Compensation Student debt Coronavirus

Legislative gains and losses for adjuncts in a time of COVID
Union scores expanded Workers’ Comp support, Student Borrower Bill of Rights

Just as the COVID-19 pandemic severely impacted public education, so too did it impact the California Legislature and CFT’s legislative goals.

What would normally have been a rigorous six-month period to discuss the state budget and legislation, was reduced to two virtual sessions, one running from May 4 to June 19, and the other from July 27 to August 31. This forced the Legislature, which was slated to hear and discuss some 2,390 bills, to shelve consideration of any bills not deemed related to the pandemic, wildfires, and affordable housing.

Article Part-time faculty Coronavirus AFT

The patient is on the table — Higher Education in America is sick
Opinion

By Geoff Johnson, AFT Guild, San Diego and Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community Colleges

Higher education in America is sick. Its classrooms and campuses have been largely shuttered, save but for students taking lab courses, or practicums, ironically in hospitals. Students and instructors are now confined to the domains of their computers and laptop screens in the educational netherworlds of Zoom or Cranium. With the exception of online instruction developed prior to the crisis, what is being delivered, more so than taught, is a curriculum of coping under the duress of the coronavirus pandemic.

Article Coronavirus Workers Compensation

New Workers’ Comp law deems corona-related employee illness occupational injury
Quick Facts: SB 1159

On September 17, Governor Newsom signed SB 1159 (Hill, D-San Mateo), which directs the Workers’ Compensation system to presume that an employee’s illness related to coronavirus is an occupational injury and therefore eligible for Workers’ Compensation benefits if specified criteria are met. The bill creates a “rebuttable presumption” for healthcare workers, first responders, or workers on any worksite that has an outbreak of COVID-19.