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UC-AFT Faculty Bargaining Update #10 UCLA December 3


UC-AFT Faculty Bargaining Session #10

December 3, 2019

UC Los Angeles


UCLA Members and Supporters Pack the Room...Again!

Our members and student allies showed up in force at UCLA with a presence that filled the room all day. Several members gave moving testimony about failures in the appointment and reappointment process, delayed and/or forgotten merit reviews, including one unfairly punishing a new mother, as well as crooked attempts by the university to change employment terms mid-contract.

UC Continues to Peddle Contingency Schemes: Five Months for This Counterproposal? Really?

Covering the terms of pre-continuing appointments, Article 7A is at the heart of our contract. Both sides passed initial proposals of 7A on June 19th, 2019. UC-AFT passed a robust proposal that seeks to strengthen the security and professionalism of lecturers in the first six years of teaching, while the University passed a proposal that gutted the rights of our pre-continuing members. UC agreed to counter first.

After more than five months, the University demonstrated unwillingness to respond seriously to the major concepts within our proposal. The counterproposal they offered at UCLA merely adjusted a couple of details about the contents of appointment letters and reverted to one section of current contract language that had been struck out in their initial proposal (and that we have identified as wholly inadequate). They continue to assert that pre-continuing appointments are “self-terminating” and, consequently, that they are legally entitled to choose not to bargain with us over how and when we can be reappointed. Yet, in a self-contradiction, they are also proposing to eliminate all reappointment rights that exist in our current contract--that is, they’re trying to bargain over reappointment while telling us we can’t do the same.

The University refuses to take seriously our calls for job security and faculty equity, and continues to conceive of us as cogs in their contingent labor machine rather than as scholar-teachers who love educating UC students. Meanwhile, UC students pay more for their education, the UC continues to profit off our low-wage labor, and teaching faculty lose their jobs and livelihoods due to poor management and administrative bloat. Overhauling hiring, rehiring, and performance reviews is part of our goal to strengthen job security for all of UC-AFT teaching faculty, pre-continuing and continuing alike. UC’s current posture is to vaguely link these issues to a compensation proposal and to refuse to pass counterproposals until they see our salary proposal. This may signal a future attempt to use an enticing salary offer to buy us off our job security and workload demands. We anticipate that they will dangle future raises over our heads to avoid making real improvements on job security and workload. We reject this logic. Appointment, reappointment, and review processes are not economic issues, and we will not negotiate as if we are slicing a pie.

UC-AFT Passed Eight Proposals (Across the Table) at this Session

Our team made the most of our UCLA session by passing a total of eight articles on a range of issues.

On Article 2 Academic Freedom, our proposal clarifies that all sections of the UC Academic Personnel Manual regarding academic freedom apply to us and guarantees that a Unit 18 faculty member will participate in any committee reviewing an academic freedom complaint from a member of our bargaining unit.

On Article 3 Academic Responsibility, our proposal connects academic responsibility to the updated criteria of effective teaching and mentoring in our Article 24 and new Article X (review criteria and process) proposals. Under types of unacceptable conduct, we accepted new language from the university on sexual violence and harassment, and we added new language about discrimiation based on citizenship and immigration status.

On Article 4 Non-Discrimination in Employment, our proposal clarifies that our members have non-mutually exclusive access to DFEH, EEOC, UC’s internal investigation procedures and/or the grievance process for resolution of issues within this article. Our proposal also provides clear timelines for investigations and new language prohibiting retaliation for claimants and those who support them.

On Article 6 Academic Year Appointments, our proposal clarifies the service period, which would improve access to unemployment during summer months and make sure that faculty are not exploited by doing unpaid labor outside of service period. We also clarify the service period for Fiscal Year appointments and stop the use of summer appointments to pay for extra work performed during the academic year.

On Article 19 Reassignment, our proposal would require the university to give 90 days notice in the case of a reassignment and to meet with the member and union to discuss the details of reassignment and to negotiate over the impacts. Our proposal also requires reassignment of all Unit 18 members in the case of program or department disestablishment.

On Article 32 Grievance Procedure, our proposal seeks to clarify the timeline for filing grievances with respect to new policy effective dates and/or the date of harm caused by implementation of a policy. It also seeks to streamline the process by requiring timely responses by the university.

On Article 33 Arbitration, our proposal seeks to address a major problem we’ve had in grievances and arbitration where the university abuses the power of “academic judgement.” Our proposal does this by creating a third party academic judgement panel that will decide whether or not issues are truly academic in nature. Our proposal will allow an arbitrator to rule on the contractual issues while accepting and utilizing the panel’s decisions on academic issues.

On Article 41 Parking, our proposal guarantees access to parking permits for all UC-AFT teaching faculty regardless of appointment length or percentage time. Our proposal also caps parking cost at no more than .5% of actual salary for the term covered by the permit.

Thank you for your continued support of our contract campaign. Together, we can and will gain better working conditions and wages for UC’s teaching faculty.