Associated Students Incorporated discuss the strike and the challenge for students following. 

In a resounding display of solidarity and determination, the California Faculty Association (CFA) recently concluded a system-wide strike back in late January, sending a powerful message to California State University (CSU) management. The fight for equitable treatment and fair wages for faculty is far from over. 

Despite securing significant gains in the recent negotiations, the CFA recognizes that the struggle is ongoing, particularly in the search for livable wages that are essential for educators to effectively fulfill their roles in delivering quality education. 

The strike, which saw professors, lecturers, librarians, counselors, and coaches across all 23 CSU campuses unite in a collective call for justice, highlighted the critical importance of ensuring that faculty members are adequately compensated for their invaluable contributions to students’ education.

 At the core of this request is the necessity for a salary that enables faculty members to afford the cost of living in the areas surrounding CSU campuses and to compensate for a changing economy.

Essentially, a fundamental principle within this issue: students deserve to receive the full value of the education for which they pay tuition fees. The dedication and expertise of faculty members are essential in delivering this promise.

Without a salary that meets basic living expenses, educators might find themselves grappling with financial challenges that hinder their capacity to teach and mentor students effectively.

The recent negotiations between the CFA and CSU management yielded significant victories, including a 5% General Salary Increase that extends to July 1, 2023, and extended paid parental leave. Though these achievements mark significant progress, they merely scratch the surface of the larger battle for economic fairness within the educational landscape.

Professor Dr. Gondwe, who teaches the Coyote Chronicle journalism class, shed light on the recent negotiations. Reflecting on the initial demands and subsequent compromises, Dr. Gondwe revealed.

“The initial demand was a 12 percent increase, but the University was proposing 5 percent. After the strike, CFA settled for a 5% increment, then another 2 percent starting July 1st if all things remain constant, Many faculty members are not happy about it.” said Gondwe. 

The CFA remains devoted in its commitment to advocating for the interests of faculty members and ensuring that they are afforded the dignity and respect they deserve. This includes pushing for further increases in wages to address the pressing issue of affordability in California’s high-cost communities.

Gwendolyn Watson, first year student, passionately expressed her belief that professors should receive fair compensation for the considerable time and effort they invest in teaching and guiding students. 

“I expect to get exactly what I put into my school and education, so I wish the same for my professors in terms of fair compensation for their dedication and hard work,” said Watson.

As the California Faculty Association (CFA) continues its ongoing conversation and negotiation with CSU management, students play an integral role in advocating for fair treatment of faculty members. Their active participation is crucial as the quality of their educational experience directly correlates with the working conditions of their professors.

By standing together with their educators, students actively uphold the collaborative spirit of knowledge-seeking, rooted in fairness and equity. Their united front emphasizes the vital role of acknowledging and valuing the valuable contributions of faculty members to the educational community.

If CSU fails to ensure fair wages and livable work conditions for faculty, CFA won’t hesitate to strike again as heard from sources. Another strike would disrupt our education, emphasizing how crucial faculty conditions are for the entire university.

CSU management needs to understand that another strike is a serious possibility if faculty concerns aren’t addressed. Not only does it affect education quality, but it also disrupts campus life.

Students, who need a stable and supportive learning environment, would definitely voice their discontent if another strike loomed. Together with faculty, our voices demand fair treatment and better working conditions within the CSU system.

As the fight for economic justice in education continues, the CFA stands firm in its dedication to support the rights of all educators. Their commitment guarantees that students receive the best education they’re entitled to, and that it ensures academic excellence and personal growth

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