Topic: Collective Bargaining

Article CFT 100

Commemorating 40 years of collective bargaining
The difference one law makes for teachers and classified employees

Editor’s note: California Teacher published this article in 2015, 40 years after K-14 teachers and classified staff won collective bargaining rights in California.

By Elaine Johnson

On May 20, 1976, I cast the first vote for teachers’ collective bargaining in the state of California. TV cameras recorded the event at Redwood High School in Larkspur, and in those pre-DVR times, the family watched it that evening on the 6 o’clock news.

Article CFT 100

Memoir of a Union Lobbyist: 50 Years Looking Back

Editor’s note: This memoir was originally published as “30 Years Looking Back” in August 1999 by the Institute of Industrial Relations in CPER, A Periodical of Employee Relations in the Public Sector. 

By Mary Bergan

I begin with Robert Reich’s admonition that a memoir is not a history. It chronicles events as the writer remembers them. This is a memoir.

Article Local Action Part-time faculty

Freeway Flyers: Local action & quick news
Contract gains and remembering Sam Russo

North Orange County adjunct faculty score rehire gains

After a long and protracted negotiations process which started in January of 2017 and went to fact-finding this January, Adjunct Faculty United, representing part-time faculty in the North Orange County Community College District, were able to secure an agreement from the district after separating contract negotiations, from negotiations over rehire rights driven by the passage of CFT-sponsored SB 1379.

Article Strike Local Action

Teachers never walk alone when they have union brothers and sisters
Six Days That Shook Los Angeles – Part 6, Conclusion

UTLA’s fight to save public education resonated far and wide. Messages of solidarity and selfies of fist-pumping teachers poured in from Kentucky to Canada. Union locals across Los Angeles set up support networks for more than 200 LAUSD schools. For Writers Guild members, joining teachers on picket lines was an opportunity to pay back their mentors.

Article Strike Local Action

The power of parents: A new generation shows its commitment to local schools
Six Days That Shook Los Angeles - Part 5

United Teachers Los Angeles has fought for nearly 50 years to give parents a greater voice in how their children’s schools are run. In recent years, UTLA stepped up its outreach by hiring community organizers, building coalitions, and working with supporters in changing neighborhoods.

Those efforts bore fruit in January, when thousands of parents joined teachers on picket lines across the 700-square-mile school district to fight for “the schools our students deserve.”

Article Strike Local Action

The UTLA strike was personal for Josh Pechthalt
Six Days That Shook Los Angeles - Part 4

Manual Arts High School has a proud 109-year history. Alumni include painter Jackson Pollock, actor Paul Winfield, and tennis champion Richard “Pancho” Gonzalez. Former teacher Josh Pechthalt was shaped by – and has helped to reshape – the South L.A. fixture.

CFT President Josh Pechthalt was a student at Fairfax High in 1970, when United Teachers Los Angeles struck for nearly a month. He later taught social studies at Manual Arts High School for more than 20 years, and was on the front lines in 1989, when UTLA struck a second time. 

Article Strike Local Action

UTLA retirees link “Class of 2019” to 1989 and 1970 walkouts
Six Days That Shook Los Angeles - Part 3

During the strike, hundreds of retired L.A. teachers returned to their former schools to continue the fight for public education. One veteran of the two previous strikes said back then UTLA was up against an intransigent district, but didn’t have to face billionaires and unrestrained charter school growth.

UTLA-Retired is now mobilizing all its 4,300 members for the special election in March to fill a key seat on the LAUSD school board and tilt the balance away from a pro-charter majority.

Article Strike Charter schools Local Action

Charter schools cost L.A. Unified nearly $600 million per year, board votes for moratorium
Six Days That Shook Los Angeles - Part 2

Eight days after the six-day strike had ramped up public pressure, the Los Angeles Unified school board passed a groundbreaking resolution calling for a moratorium on new charters in the district until Sacramento completes a study of how their unchecked expansion has affected traditional schools. The district also made a significant investment in local community schools.

Article Strike

Strike? Stand with L.A. teachers to win the schools students deserve

UPDATE: After the factfinding report was released on December 18, UTLA announced it will go on strike January 10.

A Red-for-Ed wave rolled through downtown Los Angeles on December 15 as tens of thousands of members and supporters of United Teachers Los Angeles protested large class sizes, low pay, over-testing, a shortage of school nurses and other support staff, and the unregulated growth of charter schools.

Article Local Action Part-time faculty
Local President Stephanie Rosenblatt and Cerritos faculty members organize to demand equity at the board of trustees meeting.

Cerritos Faculty Federation takes a stand for healthcare

Cerritos faculty are taking a stand for equity.

“Right now our college doesn’t provide any sort of health benefit to part-timers,” explained local President Stephanie Rosenblatt. “Most of the districts around us provide at least some sort of reimbursement scheme, in which part-time faculty are reimbursed at even a minimal level for their healthcare premiums.”

Article Local Action

UTLA rally draws thousands in call for ‘the schools LA students deserve’

Today thousands of educators from across Los Angeles jammed Grand Park today in a rally for “the Schools LA Students Deserve.” They arrived by rail, bus, car and on foot—wearing UTLA red to send a loud message to the Los Angeles Unified School District that teachers will not stop fighting for smaller class sizes, fully staffed schools, clean and safe schools, and fair compensation.

United Teachers Los Angeles was joined in the rally by students, parents, and community groups and supported by its affiliates CFT, CTA, AFT and NEA.

Article Part-time faculty

Part-timer health benefits: The successes and challenges ahead

Among the many challenges that part-time, or contingent faculty face, health care benefits, or rather, the lack thereof, has been one of the most significant.

According to Bloomberg, healthcare is the leading cause of bankruptcy in the United States, and in spite of the passage of the Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare, in March 2010, the number of bankruptcies attributed to healthcare costs tripled in 2017, while the general rate of bankruptcies fell overall.

Article Local Action

New holidays for Long Beach staff

The Long Beach Council of Classified Employees ratified a three-year agreement providing significant economic relief and longer holidays for about 425 members.

Pay will increase 3 percent the first year retroactive to this July 1, followed by cost-of-living increases of at least 2.1 percent and 2.35 percent the second and third years.

Article Local Action

San Francisco paras see pay increase

Facing a crisis of affordable housing that threatens to push educators out of the city, United Educators of San Francisco’s 6,200 teachers, early childhood educators, paraprofessionals, nurses and social workers negotiated an 11 percent pay increase over three years, as well as annual bonuses. The overall compensation package will grow to 16 percent if voters approve a parcel tax that city leaders hope to place on the ballot in 2018.

Article Local Action

Longevity awarded new respect

AFT Local 6142 members made two important gains at the bargaining table with front-loaded pay raises and a reworked system of longevity stipends. 

Chief Negotiator Luukia Smith said El Camino College staff will receive a 5 percent raise for 2017 retroactive to January 1, with at least 1.28 percent more in 2018 and a cost-of living increase the following year.