UC Berkeley News
Web Feature

UC Berkeley Web Feature

Strike under way at UC campuses

– Union service workers at the University of California's 10 campuses began a planned five-day strike today (Monday, July 14), despite a San Francisco judge's restraining order prohibiting them from walking off the job without giving adequate notice.

Related information
• Message to students on responding to impending strike activity on campus
Members of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Union (AFSCME), Local 3299, which represents approximately 8,000 service workers and 11,000 patient care technicians system-wide, have set up picket lines at UC campuses. UC has been negotiating separate contracts with both employee groups since last year.

At UC Berkeley, where some 200 union members and sympathizers are picketing, the strike has halted the campus's perimeter bus services and some construction work, but caused minimal disruption overall. Around 380 custodians, food service workers, bus drivers, parking attendants and gardeners did not report to work, and it is unknown how many of the absences are due to the strike.

Services such as trash collection and dining operations are being covered by other workers; trash pickup will be limited. No buildings are closed, and summer classes are running as normal. Arrangements are being made for AC Transit to provide transportation to perimeter campus facilities such as the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

Last Friday, San Francisco Superior Court Judge Patrick Mahoney issued a temporary restraining order at the request of the Public Employment Relations Board, which issued a complaint against AFSCME for bad-faith bargaining, failing to give adequate notice of a planned strike, and for encouraging employees to participate in a strike against UC facilities even though their absence from work would clearly endanger the public's safety.
Despite the judge's order, AFSCME leaders have moved forward with the job action, which is expected to last through Friday. The UC Office of the President has said that union members who strike are not authorized to be absent and may be subject to disciplinary action.