CSU faculty authorize strike that could start next month

first_imgCSU Chancellor Charles Reed issued a statement saying administrators were doing everything they could to reach a settlement, but if faculty do go on strike the system has plans in place to minimize disruptions. In Sacramento, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger issued a statement saying he was optimistic talks would resume. “Faculty and administrators must work together in good faith so that our students, who are bettering themselves through receiving a quality college education, do not become the unintended victims of a looming strike,” he said. Both sides agree CSU’s professors and lecturers are paid less than peers at comparable institutions. But administrators said they made an offer to increase wages by nearly 25 percent over the next three years. Union leaders dispute that most faculty would receive that much, questioning the mechanics of how the raises would be structured. A fact-finder’s report was completed Friday and sent to both sides, who have 10 days to decide what to do next. The report will not be made public until then. Union officials said about 80 percent of the 11,000 dues-paying faculty members eligible to vote on a strike did so and of those, 94 percent endorsed the action. The system has about 23,000 faculty in all. “We do not want to strike. We want to achieve a settlement, but the administration of the CSU has proven extremely obstinate for the past six months,” Travis said. In the statement, CSU said the fact-finder’s report would make clear the administration has “gone to great lengths” to try to reach a settlement. Some called the decision to strike a last resort. “I don’t think the CSU understands how bitter the faculty are,” said James David Ballard, president of the California Faculty Association’s CSUN chapter. “It’s not just about us and money. It’s about the quality of education that is going down. I don’t think the CSU understands how this strike will affect the long term.” Staff Writer Susan Abram contributed to this report. BERKELEY – Faculty of the nation’s largest four-year public university system have set the stage for a labor strike that could start as early as next month. The strike authorization vote announced Wednesday comes after nearly two years of bargaining have failed to produce an agreement. “We are a faculty that is fed up and we’re a faculty that’s ready to walk off the job,” California Faculty Association President John Travis said as he announced results of the vote at the Southern California campus of CSU Dominguez Hills. Union leaders said if a strike is called it would be limited to two-day actions held sequentially at the system’s 23 campuses to lessen the impact on CSU’s more than 400,000 students. last_img

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