While you have no legal obligation to inform your department or students of your plan to strike, we are encouraging members to inform their networks of students and professors about the strike and encourage broad participation. Here are a couple templates to use to send out to undergraduate students and faculty.
Our union which includes all of the teaching assistants, tutors, and readers in the UCs (13,000 of us) has called for a strike for finals week and through the end of grading. We will formally announce it to the UCs on May 31 if we have not resolved our unfair labor practice (ULP) disputes with them at that point.
Our dedication to our students’ education has been at the forefront of our union work – in fact our recent struggles focused on reducing class size and ensuring quality TAships. Here is some information about the potential strike and also ask for your help in pressuring the university to resolve its unfair labor practices:
- This strike is far from a done deal. If management agrees to treat our members with the respect, we can avoid this strike. You can help us by calling President Janet Napolitano (510-987-9074) and Director of Labor Relations Peter Chester (510-987-9919). Tell them that they need to work for labor peace. Tell them it is not acceptable for the university to threaten, arrest, and discipline union members for legal activity. Explain that your finals and grades matter.
- Second, in past grade strikes elsewhere, undergraduates were given a special code in their grades that did not damage their GPA. Management could also employ other options for grading. It is highly unlikely management will refuse students credit or the ability to graduate in case of a strike.
- Our union has filed ULPs on management’s refusal to negotiate on quality of education issues (class size), and we have faced massive aggression from the UCs as a result. We have been arrested and disciplined for picketing, had our signs ripped up, been threatened with no future employment and had our pay docked excessively for union activity. The potential strike is about these ULPs and very much needs your participation to find a good resolution.
Dear [your department] / Faculty of UC [your campus]:
We are asking you all to sign on today to the UCSC Faculty Association online letter to President Napolitano, urging her and the UC administration to negotiate in good faith and to settle with our TA student worker union, UAW2865, as soon as possible.
Please sign on here: http://ucscfa.org/petition2/
Currently, due to many varying tactics of intimation and escalated threats by the UC management to stifle union organizing and student-worker mobilization, your TAs, graders, tutors and readers are planning for an escalated Unfair Labor Practices (ULP) strike starting June 7th of finals week and, if necessary, until the end of our spring appointments. Here is some information:
- This strike is far from a done deal. If management agrees to treat our members with the seriousness and respect they deserve, we can avoid the strike; however, this would require substantial pressure from you all as faculty to contact management and urge for labor peace You can help us by calling President Janet Napolitano (510-987-9074) and Director of Labor Relations Peter Chester (510-987-9919).
- In addition, we ask you to please spread the word, circulate this letter to other faculty, keep informed through grad student union activists in your department, and share this information far and wide with your colleagues, undergraduate students, affiliated associations, as well as letting your graduate students know that you will stand with them in solidarity. Help us spread the word that we will not concede to threats and only will concede to the UC management doing its part to bargain in good faith and swiftly settle this historic union contract as soon as possible.
For more information, please see:
[your department] Graduate Student Association / collective, etc.