Today we announce that our union, UAW Local 2865–the union representing 12,000 TA’s, tutors, and readers across the UC–will be joining CNA and UC’s Skilled Craft’s Unit in a one-day sympathy strike with AFSCME 3299.
Yesterday, members of our union received two very important emails about UC workers. The first detailed the historic success of our union’s strike authorization vote that took place at every UC campus last week. Members of our local authorized our union’s leadership to call for a strike with thousands of graduate student workers voting to authorize a strike with a 96% approval rate. Members also received an email notifying them that AFSCME 3299–the union representing over 22,000 service and patient care workers across the UC universities and hospitals–will go on strike on November 20th. AFSCME 3299 will be joined on the picket lines by members of the California Nurses Association and UC Santa Cruz’ Skilled Crafts Unit (K7—also represented by AFSCME 3299)—each of whom have authorized a sympathy strike and given notice to UC.
Our union will also be joining AFSCME and CNA at the picket lines that day. This will bring the total number of estimated UC workers on strike on November 20th to 25,000. You can read our press release here.
Over the past several years, AFSCME 3299 has partnered with students and especially with UAW 2865 on important issues that have helped stem the tide of privatization at the UC. This includes supporting student calls for tuition freezes by lobbying in Sacramento, and partnering to organize students and workers.
Like ourselves, AFSCME workers have a first hand experience in the ways that budget cuts coupled with administrative pay raises in the last decade have negatively impacted our working conditions. AFSCME is currently fighting a 1.5% wage cut unilaterally implemented by UC management as well as threats to their pensions. Specifically, AFSCME workers are striking for a second time to address management retaliation against workers that stem from their May strike.
TA’s, tutors, and readers should withhold all work duties that day. That includes but is not limited to: teaching sections; responding to student emails; holding office hours; grading papers; and in general, anything related to your duties as an academic worker. Instead, graduate students workers should join AFSCME and CNA (and in Santa Cruz, the Skilled Crafts Unit) on the picket lines throughout the day.
Your unit will be holding informational and organizing meetings related to the strike. Your unit will also be sending more emails in the coming days updating you about the strike and how you can get involved. In the meantime please check https://www.facebook.com/ucstudentworkersunion throughout the coming weeks for real-time updates related to our strike.
You can contact your elected leadership here: http://www.uaw2865.org/about/structure/elected-officers/. Or you can also contact your department steward for further information.
Your Bargaining Team
Duane Wright-UC Davis; Brenda Medina-Hernandez-UC Davis; Marco Rosales-UC Davis; Munira Lokhandwala-UC Berkeley; Amanda Armstrong-UC Berkeley; Michelle Glowa-UC Santa Cruz; Josh Brahinsky-UC Santa Cruz; Rob Ackermann-UC Santa Barbabra; Amanda Zeddy-UC Santa Barbara; John Gust-UC Riverside; Jason Struna-UC Riverside; Cody Trojan-UC Los Angeles; Jason Ball-UC Los Angeles; Jessica Conte-UC Irvine; Robert Wood-UC Irvine; Leslie Manjarrez-UC San Diego; Kevan Aguilar-UC San Diego