Tuesday, October 13, 2009

UC-AFT List of Demands for the UC Administration

1. Our first demand is to stop the fee hikes.
We feel that Yudof should have made a deal with the governor with a trigger that if the state does not fund the UC at a certain level, student fees would go up. But Yudof has already pushed for drastic fee increases, and so the state has no reason to increase our funding. Undergraduates are now subsidizing everyone else, and yet the administration continues to cut undergrad courses and programs. Moreover, due to the reliance on non-senate faculty to teach over 50% of the student credit units and the increase in class sizes, the cost of undergraduate education has gone down significantly. We say increase enrollments and stop fee increases. In other words, protect access, diversity, affordability and quality.

2. Our second demand is to reverse the layoffs, protect vital services, and stop pay cuts for the lowest paid workers.
We are seeing layoffs, furloughs, increased workloads, increased class size, the closing of libraries, and decreased services, and we don't think it has to be this way. Pay cuts to the lowest paid workers have created safety and health issues for students, faculty, and Staff. Moreover, at UCLA, the administration has laid off most of the long-term lecturers in the College, and they are talking about suspending all writing and language requirements. This loss of essential courses will hurt UCLA's reputation for years and threaten its accreditation.

3. Our third demand is to consider progressive budget solutions. The unions have suggested alternative budget proposals, like borrowing money from the medical centers and sharing profits between units and reducing administrative units. In fact, UCSD is lending itself $40 million, and other campuses could do the same. Also, UC lent the state $200 million; we ask, why didn't they lend $200 million to the core fund?

4. Our fourth demand is budget transparency. The UC budget is $20 billion, and the state contribution represents about 16% and only 3% of the total budget was cut. We think this reduction should be shared equally between units. Medical centers bring in hundreds of millions in profits every year, and parking, housing, and services, all turn a profit. Taxing all units 5% would resolve the budget crisis. Moreover, according to its own legal financial statements, only 35% of the UC budget is legally restricted; in fact, courts have ruled that the UC budget is only restricted by its priorities.

5. Our final demand is to stop the union busting and bargain in good faith. UC administrators are claiming that the unions refused to discuss the furloughs, while in UC-AFT’s case, the librarians did accept the furloughs, and the lecturers were removed by the Office of the President from consideration. Other unions have had temporary layoffs forced on them, and their contracts have not been honored. We are also seeing outsourcing of union jobs and increased work with less time and for less money. UC should be a leader in fair and equitable employment practices.

It is too easy to blame the state for all of UC’s problems. While we need to fight for increased state funding, we have to look at the UC’s own budget structures

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