UTLA supports SEIU Local 99's call for strike authorization vote

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Thousands of LAUSD workers represented by SEIU Local 99 will participate in a strike authorization vote from March 12 through 24. The strike authorization vote includes cafeteria workers, custodians, bus drivers, and special ed assistants.

If SEIU Local 99 members go on strike, UTLA members have the right to engage in sympathy and solidarity activities in support of their SEIU Local 99 coworkers while on or off duty. Members who want to publicly support SEIU workers can wear buttons, or participate in other on-duty support activities that would be protected if it were in support of UTLA. Off-duty activities are protected by the First Amendment under free speech guidelines and include participation in picket lines when it is outside of hours of work, even if the activity occurs on school property.

SEIU Local 99 accuses the district of unfair labor practices, bad faith bargaining, cutting hours of special education assistants, and under-staffing janitorial services at schools. The union also wants the district to increase its proposed 2 percent wage hike offer. SEIU says contract negotiations have been going on for nearly a year, but ``no significant movement has been made on key issues, including wages and staffing shortages.''

UTLA President Alex Caputo-Pearl said “We 100% support our sisters and brothers in Local 99 who are fighting for clean schools, more support for special education students, and workplace dignity.  In UTLA bargaining, sessions are happening regularly, but the district isn’t moving fast enough on key issues.  We’re escalating among members, parents, and community in support of our proposals and those of Local 99, and in support of state school funding initiatives.”