“The only way we are going to fix this, and we know this from prior experience, is if we vote to strike. Let’s show that we mean business.” CFA
In a high-stakes announcement set to send shockwaves through California’s higher education landscape, the California Faculty Association (CFA) is poised to disclose the results of its pivotal strike authorization votes. Scheduled for October 30 at 3 p.m. PDT, the disclosure will feature CFA President and prominent San Diego State University Professor Charles Toombs, accompanied by CFA Bargaining Chair and CSU Sacramento Professor Kevin Wehr.
The revelation comes at a critical juncture, where labor disputes and academic challenges take center stage in the state’s public discourse. The outcome of these votes holds substantial implications, not only for faculty but for students, administrators, and all those invested in the future of California’s higher education. The CFA leadership’s announcement, followed by a question and answer session, will be hosted on the Zoom platform, offering direct engagement opportunities for reporters and the general public. A video statement will complement the disclosure.
During the preceding week, CFA members engaged in a weighty decision-making process that could alter the course of labor relations within the California State University (CSU) system. From October 21 to October 27, CFA members voted on the crucial issue of whether to bestow upon the CFA Board of Directors the authority to call for a strike, a significant step underlining the faculty’s determination to address persistent challenges.
The genesis of the dispute between the CFA and CSU management can be traced back to contentious contract negotiations. Through the summer months, the CFA Bargaining Team diligently engaged in negotiations with CSU management, focusing on the reopener contract bargaining. The 2022-24 Collective Bargaining Agreement, in its final year, required revisions, and specific sections were under review. Regrettably, negotiations reached an impasse in August, with faculty concerns at the core of the disagreement.
The CFA has steadfastly advocated for addressing the wage disparities among faculty members, expanding counseling services to counter the escalating mental health crisis on CSU campuses, and enhancing the health and safety conditions for all. The CFA has also pressed for the establishment of reasonable workload and course caps, placing the student’s overall success at the forefront.
Frustration over perceived inaction led the CFA to declare an impasse, a significant development that moved the dispute into the factfinding stage of the statutory process, bringing the possibility of a strike closer to realization.
The impending announcement by the CFA on the results of the strike authorization votes could potentially reshape the California State University system, marking a defining moment in the ongoing discourse over the future of higher education in the state.