Now that the dust has settled in our local elections, we celebrate our victories – particularly the successful election of our four Guild-endorsed trustees. We’re disappointed about the outcome of Propositions 15 and 16, making us all the more aware that we’re “a blue state but not a blue collar state,” as noted by a colleague at the L.A. County Federation of Labor after reviewing the outcome of several propositions on the November ballot.
During these unprecedented times, the Guild also made significant advances in contract negotiations. Now that we are working to implement the new language (our wins), we need you, our members, to let your chapter presidents know where the language works and where it doesn’t. Communicate with us if language needs clarification.
As we are celebrating our twin wins at the table and at the ballot box, we will work to maintain our relationship with the coalition that helped us achieve success: FACCC, CFT, the L.A. Fed, and the County Democratic Party. We created a strong infrastructure of Contract Action Teams (CATs) through our negotiations and election campaign and we will maintain that structure now that we’re back to the day-to-day business of reaching out to our members and strengthening our union.
While the California State University system recorded higher than expected enrollment this fall, this was not the case in the LACCD. Our enrollment is projected to maintain its current level (at best) or decline (at worst) and we know that means fewer jobs for faculty. One thing we can do is to work on our shared governance committees to "schedule smart" in our departments to be sure that classes fill and are not cancelled. Use our contract language to ensure we don’t exceed our class size limits, causing other classes to be cut. Since new contract language mandates that management “rely primarily on department chairs to schedule," remember that department chairs are your elected representatives. Be sure your voices are heard in your departments and that you support your department chair as these faculty representatives carry your message to the administrations.
Even with our success in lowering class size and college efforts to increase enrollment, some faculty may lose assignments. If you need help because you become unemployed or underemployed, help is available. Our Guild EDD Ombudsperson offers sessions on applying for unemployment. Other assistance is available to Guild members from the L.A. County Federation of Labor's Community Services division.
Remember -- your Guild is available to hear your concerns and take action to address them.
AFT 1521 President