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Librarian Bargaining Update #3 June 12, 2012


The University and UC-AFT Negotiating Teams met at the Office of the President in Oakland on June 12, 2012. We worked primarily on a revision of Articles 4, 5, and 6, which deal with the review process for merit increases and promotions for Librarians. We are working to integrate the three articles, remove inconsistencies or contradictions, remove duplication, and improve the provision in terms of the protections it provides for librarians undergoing academic reviews. The proposed improvements are based on problems  identified on one or more campuses or that members have raised as concerns in our bargaining survey. We will present our draft of the new article at our nextbargaining session on July 12 in Oakland. We will also be bargaining over changes being proposed by the University with respect to timelines and other issues in the grievance process, and over Article 28, Alternative Dispute Mechanism, which provides for the resolution of disputed grievances. 

The two parties came to a tentative agreement on new language for the “Per Diem” article (Article 17). In the current contract, the rules governing per diems (reimbursement for costs when traveling on University business) are in the MOU itself. The University proposed to simply refer to the University’s per diem policy and make it clear that Librarians in Unit 17 are covered by it. We countered with a proposal to ensure that Librarians receive the same per diem coverage as Senate faculty and the two parties tentatively agreed on this resolution.

We also presented information developed by Harrison Decker that demonstrates when comparing actual salaries of current librarians at UC and CSU, UC librarians significantly lag behind CSU librarians. We had earlier shown that UC salary scales lag behind CSU about 19%. What Harrison discovered is that UC tends to hire librarians at higher steps in their scale than CSU does, because the UC salary scale is so low and UC doesn’t hire many librarians at the Assistant rank. But even with the practice of hiring new librarians at UC at higher steps, UC still lags behind CSU significantly in pay to librarians. On average, UC librarians receive about $6500 less per year than CSU employees with similar education and academic library experience.

While direct bargaining over salary is now on the back burner until the State solidifies a budget and clarifies what support UC can expect in the new fiscal year, the two parties are continuing to share information and explore new approaches to salary and compensation in general that will allow us to fix the now broken UC librarian salary scale.


Mike Rotkin, Chief Negotiator, Unit 17, UC-AFT