By Anthony Silva |Staff Writer|
The California State University (CSU) faculty union approved a new deal that would raise the salary of all faculty members.
The contract will give a 1.6 percent salary increase to all faculty members.
The California Faculty Association (CFA) announced it voted in favor of the three-year deal, which would increase the CSU $1.53 billion compensation pool by three percent, according to the Sacramento Bee.
The CSU Board of Trustees still has to vote on the contract, but if approved it would provide a salary increase to the roughly 25,000 instructors, coaches, librarians and counselors at all CSU campuses.
“This contract sounds like a great thing. The professors here do a great job and deserve a raise,” said student Erica Sweeney.
“And the best part is that this won’t affect our tuition.”
An additional three percent raise would potentially be given to faculty whose salary is lower than their colleagues who have received the benefits of tenure, according to the Sacramento Bee.
The contract also includes an option to reopen salary negotiations for the 2015-16 and 2016-17 academic years.
The CFA had held peaceful demonstrations at several CSU campuses asking for pay raises to correct what many referred to as an “uneven pay policy,” according to the Los Angeles Times.
The recent protests were uneventful in comparison to the previous contract negotiations in 2012.
According to the Sacramento Bee, those negotiations resulted in many faculty members participating in one-day strikes at several campuses.
The strikes were seen as the first walkouts since the CSU faculty union was formed in 1983.
The 2012 contract did not include raises for faculty as the CSU Board of Trustees was concerned over proposed cuts to state funding and the budget crisis in Sacramento.
CSU faculty were awarded a pay increase of 1.34 percent in 2013, which was the first raise any faculty member had received in five years, according to the Los Angeles Times.
“After years of sacrifice by faculty, the 2014 contract is a work in progress towards fixing our broken salary system. It is a contract that will help us focus our energy in taking care of our families and teaching the students of California,” said CFA President Lillian Taiz in a Sacramento Bee report.
During the upcoming Winter and Spring quarters, faculty members have been asked to contact each campus CFA chapter to push for campus-based equity pay programs, according to a statement on the CFA website.
The equity pay programs would ensure that faculty would be rewarded for staying in the CSU system.
The program would also ensure that new faculty members would not initially be paid more than their colleagues with more years of service, according to the Fresno Bee.
Students have seen the new contract as a step in the right direction for the CSU system and its staff.
“The UC system is raising tuition for its students, the CSU system has shown that they are willing to invest in its staff while also keeping the student body in mind,” said student William Fallon.