CSUEU represents four bargaining units, and all four voted in favor of the agreement. Furloughs apply only to those bargaining units that ratify the agreement. Percentages in favor of ratification by bargaining unit were: Bargaining Unit 2, 86 percent; Bargaining Unit 5, 77 percent; Bargaining Unit 7, 81 percent; and Bargaining Unit 9, 82 percent, for an overall average of 81 percent.
The one-year contract, decided by a ratification vote of the membership, calls for up to 24 furlough days for full-time 12-month employees between August 1, 2009, and June 30, 2010. It provides workload protections and significant layoff mitigation.
“This was a difficult choice for our members,” said CSUEU President Pat Gantt. "They are facing very challenging times yet also understand the gravity of the budget crisis and want to play a role in its resolution.
“We have received a lot of feedback from our members throughout this process," he added. "They have shown their willingness to sacrifice for the greater good. While we are heartened to have saved thousands of jobs, we will remain vigilant. Our history with the CSU has not been positive; even in good times we have not enjoyed the increases our members deserve. We will be watching for adherence to the agreement, as well as prudent cost-cutting measures on behalf of the CSU.”
As CSUEU Vice President for Representation Russell Kilday-Hicks puts it, “I’m proud to be a part of this organization, which is willing to make this sacrifice not only for the CSU but also for the state of California.”
Employees’ pay will be spread evenly over the 11-month period. Employees will be able to choose furlough days similarly to the way they request vacation days. Furloughs will not adversely impact employee benefits or retirement.
Although the state budget has not been finalized, the Governor’s budget proposal would mean a $584 million cut to the CSU’s general fund support for 2009-10. According to the CSU, furloughs by all employees would reduce the CSU’s salary expenditures by approximately $275 million, as well as preserve 22,000 course sections or 15 percent of all classes for students for the academic year.
A furlough is a mandated period of time off without pay. Furloughs differ from salary reductions and pay cuts in that they are temporary and do not affect employment status, or health benefit eligibility or pay rate for retirement benefits. Employees are required not to work on furlough days.
Incorporated in 2005 after serving its members as a division of the California State Employees Association for more than 70 years, the California State University Employees Union has built up a rich record of achievements on behalf of its 16,000 represented employees. Today it represents classified staff members at the California State University’s 23 campuses, as well as the Office of the Chancellor, encompassing such diverse job categories as registered nurses, custodians, groundsworkers, library assistants, graphic specialists, information technology consultants and performing arts technicians, among many others.
Categories: Bargaining, Budget Central, CSU News |
Posted: 7/20/2009 |