After nearly a year without a contract, short-term truce reached in AFT/District negotiations; Many faculty gains preserved, salaries fall painfully behind
Faculty turned out in record numbers to vote on the AFT 2121 contract with the San Francisco Community College District. Of 668 valid ballots, 551 faculty voted yes (82.5%) and 117 faculty voted no (17.5%). Four ballots were disqualified. This turnout represents a 38% increase over the last major contract ratification vote. In fact, turnout was nearly 40% higher than any vote in the last decade.
With the support of an energized and involved membership—more than 100 witnessing negotiations and mediation first-hand and many hundreds more supporting the bargaining team’s work—AFT 2121 averted wholesale takebacks proposed by management. We protected students’ classroom experience by preventing cancelations and consolidations of enrolled classes; preserved our signature, long-term victories toward part-time faculty equity; maintained sabbatical leaves; prevented increases in annual teaching loads; and thwarted an attempt to shift far more healthcare cost onto workers.
Unfortunately, the agreement restores only part of the paycuts our members have suffered. Despite millions in new revenues from Prop A and Prop 30 and increasingly bright state economic projections, City College’s new leadership refused to restore the 5% unilaterally imposed cut on faculty salaries, citing “accreditation requirements” and the possibility of a further withdrawal of State funding owing to projected enrollment declines next year. The last increase to the faculty salary schedule was in 2007. Under the new agreement, faculty will see 1.5% of the 5% cut restored over the next 18 months.
While this contract is not all that City College faculty deserve, we stood behind it and urged you to vote yes because it is exponentially stronger in preserving faculty working conditions and rights than anything management considered over the last year. By the time the new contract expires, with our accreditation restored, negotiations will have revved up with new goals clearly in our sights, including a true restoration of faculty pay that is commensurate with the value of faculty work at CCSF.
The record voter turnout, 82.5% yes vote to approve the agreement, and high member engagement speak to a faculty fully determined to maintain our City College of San Francisco—a college that supports quality education and the working conditions that enable it—well into the future. With your support, our union will continue to fight for better working and learning conditions and for the inclusive, accredited, and accessible City College that San Franciscans expect and deserve.
Thank you to the AFT 2121 Elections Committee, ably chaired by member Wendy Miller, for spending a significant part of the weekend counting ballots.
If you did not get your AFT 2121 bargaining survey when you voted, please contact 2121 organizer Ona at firstname.lastname@example.org.