UC Berkeley Web Feature
Strike continues at UC campuses, picketers rally at system headquarters
BERKELEY – On the third day of their strike over wages, more than 300 union service and patient care workers and their sympathizers rallied today (Wednesday, July 16) outside the University of California headquarters in downtown Oakland.
|• Message to students on responding to impending strike activity on campus
The protest is part of a planned five-day strike called by the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME), Local 3299, which represents nearly 20,000 custodians, food service workers, bus drivers, groundskeepers, parking attendants and patient care technicians at the 10 UC campuses and 5 medical centers. UC has been in negotiations with AFSCME over two separate contracts since last year.
At UC Berkeley, picket lines dwindled as union members and protesters headed to the UC offices in downtown Oakland. About 300 employees did not report to work, and it remains unclear exactly how many are participating in the strike.
Shuttle bus service to campus perimeter destinations, such as the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, is operating at close-to-normal levels. Delays to trash pick-up continue. Custodial and dining services are being covered by non-striking workers, and scheduled classes are running as normal.
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, particularly at the medical centers.
Despite the judge's order, AFSCME leaders moved forward with the job action, which is expected to last through Friday.