California Faculty Association Walks Out on Negotiations
with California State University
(May 7, 2012) – The California Faculty Association (CFA) walked out of negotiations with the California State University (CSU) on Saturday, May 5 after the two sides had resumed bargaining on May 3.
CFA rejected CSU's proposal without offering any counter-proposals. CSU Vice Chancellor of Human Resources Gail Brooks said the university is baffled by the union's behavior.
"We are very disappointed that CFA chose to walk out and we were not able to bring these negotiations to a successful conclusion,” said Brooks. “It appears to us that the only issue left on the table is the amount of taxpayer dollars that are paid for union leave time for the CFA President and Political Action Committee positions. We have said all along that we want a new contract, and CSU remains willing to continue the negotiation process at any time to resolve these differences.”
Both CSU and the faculty union had agreed to resume negotiations on a number of issues remaining including the appointment and evaluation of temporary faculty; fee waivers for employees and the amount of leave time paid by CSU for union officials.
In their April 6 settlement proposal, (prior to CFA's strike vote), the CFA – contrary to its statements to the media – proposed to accept maintaining salaries at their current levels, with subsequent re-opening opportunities in the remaining two years of the contract if CSU added a provision to suspend restrictions on concerted activities.
On May 5, CSU presented the faculty union with a settlement proposal that included a negotiated agreement on temporary faculty, evaluations, discipline, as well as extending fee waivers for dependents up to age 25. By making this proposal, CSU believed it had addressed all of the five issues left on the table at the start of the May 3 negotiations. The only exception was that CSU said it would no longer continue to pay for the leave time used by the CFA President and Political Action committee positions to conduct union business.
The CSU had also expressed a willingness to meet CFA's request to revisit changes on coach fee waivers; providing preferences to faculty whose sabbatical was denied due to budget reasons, and improvement to parental leave. Finally, CFA informed the CSU bargaining team that it had decided to remove academic freedom from any list of remaining issues.
The next step in the bargaining process is the appointment of a fact-finding panel headed by an outside neutral party who will hear arguments from both sides and then make a recommendation as to the merits of each proposal.
About the California State University
The California State University is the largest system of senior higher education in the country, with 23 campuses, approximately 427,000 students and 44,000 faculty and staff. The CSU awards about 99,000 degrees annually and since its creation in 1961 has conferred nearly 2.6 million. The CSU is renowned for the quality of its teaching and for the job-ready graduates it produces. The mission of the CSU is to provide high-quality, affordable education to meet the ever changing needs of the people of California. With its commitment to excellence, diversity and innovation, the CSU is the university system that is working for California. Connect with and learn more about the CSU at CSU Social Media.