AFSCME Bargaining Update

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March 11, 2019

 

Dear colleague:

I am writing to update you on our negotiations with your union, the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME), regarding our efforts to get a fair contract for you and your other AFSCME-represented colleagues.

After months of no meetings, we finally were able to get back to the negotiating table with AFSCME leaders last week, where we offered the union another improved proposal that included the following:

  • Compensation: 3% pay increases for both service and patient care employees each year for the next four years, plus a one-time payment of $2,000 for all eligible employees upon contract ratification.
  • Health Benefits: Quality health benefits at the same rates as other UC employees with similar salaries, plus a $25 cap for any monthly premium increases for UC’s Kaiser and Health Net Blue & Gold plans.
  • Excellent Retirement Benefits: Current employees will see no change in their pension benefits. Employees hired after a new contract is signed would choose between a traditional pension plan (with maximum retirement age at 60 and a lump sum payment option) and a 401(k)-style plan.
  • Contracting: Committees at each location and/or the systemwide level that would allow AFSCME to work with UC regarding contracting decisions involving bargaining unit work.
  • Professional development: Expanded professional development programs to assist service employees build skills and be eligible for higher-paying jobs.

Unfortunately, the union quickly rejected our proposal and did not offer one of its own. As a surprise, union leaders actually sent out strike notices during the bargaining session, further demonstrating they weren’t really trying to settle the contract.

I am saddened by how long these negotiations have taken, and concerned that we have not been able to give you additional pay increases. You play an important role in supporting the university and we greatly appreciate your hard work and contributions.

We will continue to bargain in good faith to get the contact you deserve as quickly as possible, but that will require good faith efforts from both sides.

Sincerely,

Dwaine B. Duckett Vice President
Systemwide Human Resources