Staff union vote favors furloughs

The CSU Employees Union (CSUEU) represents over 16,000 employees on 23 CSU campuses and in the office of the chancellor. Its bargaining units comprise the majority of non-academic employees in the state university system. Recently the CSUEU announced the results of a survey of its members. According to the union, the members voted overwhelmingly to support furloughs as opposed to layoffs:

In a series of advisory votes over the last week, CSUEU members have clearly indicated their support for the concept of two furlough days per month, as proposed earlier this month by the Chancellor’s Office.

The results of the votes taken at the chapter level are reflected in the chart below. An online survey and a scientific poll came to the same result: CSUEU-represented employees support the concept of furloughs at the rate of approximately 82 percent in favor. [Read More]

This does not mean there will not be layoffs, that all has to be negotiated and is subject to the state budget outcome.

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7 Responses to Staff union vote favors furloughs

  1. Melissa says:

    I am one of those who voted for Furloughs; but when given the chance again will not. The poll came to us in an URGENT EMAIL TO PLEASE VOTE SO WE CAN GET A SENSE OF WHAT OUR PEOPLE WANT: Would you prefer to take 2 Furlough Days a month or Layoffs?…. The assumption (which is bad on my part) was that what ever we vote on would be fair across the board on some level… either IF FURLOUGHS were accepted it would be for every employee. Raises would stop happening. Stipends/Bonuses/House and Car Allowances/Entertainment Allowances would stop being paid. New Hires would stop being hired, except in extreme/critical cases (but I have a concern with that factor too… – what is considered to be an essential/critical position is relative to who makes the decisions) OR IF IT WAS ACCEPTED for only some and not others, then the Unions who had to take the Furlough Days would have a guarantee that the money saved went to saving jobs not padding the pockets of “those”.

    The more detailed information that came out since the URGENT REQUEST TO VOTE FOR CSUEU EEs – The Budget Forum that was put on to help share the information and offer up Q&A sessions where employees can hear straight from the horses mouth ( or at least the top dogs on our CAMPUS ) and still – we received no-answer responses.

    Why would our UNION then go and agree to right up a contract that we would receive 24 days of Furlough in an 11 month period ( now the number has jumped from 2 Furlough days a month to about 2.18 Furlough days a month) with no guarantee that the savings would go to saving our fellow Union Members jobs? Without knowing what the other Unions are doing? We could very well be setting ourselves up to take a decreased pay check, assuming the work of 4 of our laid-off co-workers and being expected to accomplish that work in less amount of workdays… all the while other Unions keep their full-pay, very well-paid ‘consultants’ continue to be hired, executives continue to receive ‘perks’… I can’t believe they are not thinking about the environment that this will create.

    ALL OF THIS URGENCY! ALL OF THIS UNKNOWN! ALL OF THIS INJUST! MAKES ME NOT TRUST WHAT IS HAPPENING.

    WE NEED TO START WORKING TOGETHER FOR THE COMMON GOOD!!!!

    Like I said in the beginning; I voted rashly for FURLOUGH DAYS because without time to really think it out and find the information to make a sound decision. I reacted to helping people; SHARING THE BURDEN! But there doesn’t seem to be much helping or sharing of burdens occurring. WITH GOOD REASON TO DOUBT … so when votes come again – if nothing has changed – I will vote differently.

  2. Melissa says:

    and the calstate.edu website is down. 🙂 Priceless!

  3. Bob says:

    Furloughs are a step in the door to permanent wage cuts. Only CSU union members were allowed to vote in the calcsea poll so the sampling is very small and not necessarily reprsentative. Union states that 2 days per month would be equivalent to a 9% wage reduction but they forget to mention the 3.4% increase not received on July 1, 2008. Further their tentative agreement for 24 days off is over 11 months not 12. On top of that they are unable to provide a link for members to view the tentative agreement. Looks like the union is definitely in bed with management. The Faculty union is fighting back – calcsea has gone belly up..

  4. Bob says:

    Forgot to mention – please vote NO on the tentative agreement for furloughs..

  5. Laura says:

    I will vote no when we are asked to ratify this idea. This is being pushed too fast without enough facts to back up the things we are hearing.

    We know we cannot control the outcome, so why would we vote in favor of a pay cut for a whole year or more? I can’t afford a pay cut.

    For me it’s pretty simple. Look out for #1.

  6. Christine says:

    I voted for furloughs and I cannot say I regret it.

    To me, layoffs IS the worst case scenario that I’d like to avoid. I joined a union to help each other as a group, not for my own personal interest(s). I also do not believe having more people laid off [in an already bad economy] and on unemployment is the better alternative. Layoffs are real and has happened across the LAUSD. I’ve seen the impact it has had on my kids — campus closing for the summer, classes filled with twice as many students, etc. — and it’s not getting any better with the layoffs. So I guess my response is, “Furloughs may not work, but layoffs will?” I doubt that. I see it as cushioning the blow if anything, albeit a small cushion.

    If you read the Q&A on their website, I knew we’re dealing with selfish and corrupt politicians. We’re obviously getting the short end of the stick, but some jobs would be saved vs the many many that would be axed.

    Except from bargaining: http://www.csueu.org/Bargaining/tabid/63/ctl/Details/mid/394/ItemID/452/Default.aspx
    Q21. Is the CSU considering reducing the pay of any MPPs or executive employees who recently received pay increases?
    A21. No.
    Q46. Will CSU executives have their housing allowance, cars and other perks reduced in addition to furloughs?
    A46. No.

    But aside from whining and complaining, there’s no real better option. And when I say “better option”, I mean “plausible” option — one that would actually be agree with the powers that be. Even with layoffs, administrators will continue to their perks and raises. It’s not fair, but that’s going to happen.

    But furloughs may happen and it may work — even in a corrupt system. The DMV, court houses, and soon mail carriers are all going through furloughs so I am going to assume it works somewhat. (after all their government is our government 🙂 )

    What does make me upset is that campus “may” not be closing. The DMV and court houses are actually CLOSED on furlough days — which would give the CSU and estimated $200 million in savings in operation costs.

    It’s not really a furlough if we’re not closing. Knowing whether our school would be closed on furloughs makes a huge difference. It’s been about a week since electiosn and we STILL don’t know if our campus will be close or not of furlough days. So my question is — how are we going to close that budget gap if the campuses will still be in operation?

  7. Margaret says:

    I have BIG misgivings about the manipulation and exploitation of the CSUEU membership who were forced into a room, drilled by the union leadership and management to force a vote within 48 hours on furloughs or layoffs.

    The reality is that now that CFA has voted for furloughs senior faculty are STILL crowing that they are still receiving their raises and COLAs. In the past 3 years they have received 20% pay increases. The staff has received 3%.

    Why is our membership so gullible? I want the Teamsters to take over our membership–at least they would fight for us. CSUEU is holding our butt cheeks wide and holding a jar of vaseline for management to screw us royally. Anyone else want to switch? I suggest a petition be circulated for mutiny from CSUEU.

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