Confidential Employees at SJSU and in CSU

July 1, 2013

This is a highly misunderstood term!

Confidential employees are confidential employees as defined in the Higher Education Employer-Employee Relations Act of 1978 (HEERA). These are employees which are excluded from the bargaining units because they are involved in contract bargaining.

It has to do with contract bargaining, not confidential information.
About confidential employees Government Code 3562 (d) of HEERA says:
“Confidential employee” means any employee who is required to develop or present management positions with respect to meeting and conferring or whose duties normally require access to confidential information which contributes significantly to the development of such management positions.
The term has absolutely nothing to do access to confidential documents. A lot of the data we have access to is confidential, data ranging from passwords to e-mail addresses and phone numbers.

CSUEU supports CFA

November 9, 2011
CSUEU Board of Directors Resolution supporting CFA

CSUEU BoD Resolution Supporting CFA

Click here to see a high resolution version.

Opinion: Embrace your whiners

April 10, 2011

I am a liberal, a democrat and a union steward.

So, you can imagine; I have been called a whiner many, many times. I consider it a compliment. That’s a big reason I blog. Blogs can be great places to whine.

Many people are afraid of confrontation. They will remain silent even when they see problems. In my opinion a strong organization is one that confronts problems. But, how does an organization know it has a problem? It embraces its whiners.

The whiners are your canaries in the coal mine, your first line of alert. So, if you call me a whiner don’t be surprised if I say, why thank you.

Organizations who recognize the value of whiners and provide them with a venue; have a lot to gain. Those who don’t, risk finding much harsher critics; their customers.

Criticism is good

April 9, 2011

In my opinion no matter what kind of organization it is, a union or a nation, criticism is a good thing; it means people care. Care should to be taken to criticize the process, not the person. Critics and leaders should try to check their egos at the door. Everyone is entitled to an opinion and are entitled to voice their opinion. Critics and leaders are advised to not imply malice without very, very strong evidence. Leaders in an organization that is the subject of criticism should not take criticism personal. It is not personal and it does not mean your efforts are not appreciated. All criticism means is that somebody thinks something should be different. Hey, the critic may be wrong! But, at least give the idea some consideration. At least the critic cares enough to voice an opinion. That is a good thing. Sometimes, I know rarely, it is possible the critic may be right. A little thick skin is recommended for all involved. Today’s critic may be tomorrows leader, or not.

Today is my mom’s birthday

December 27, 2010

My mom and I from the 1960s

Click on photo to enlarge

I have so many wonderful memories of my mom. She was a regular Norma Rae. Pauline was an Irish American working woman who was a lifetime member of the United Steelworker’s Union. I still have her union card.

I remember her working the picket line when her plant went on strike. She was president of her union local. She also liked to drink beer and smoked. It was that last part that killed her.

Despite her working she was old school. She did all the cooking and cleaning and waited on my father. Even though she was a fireball in the workplace she was afraid of driving and did not learn to drive until she was in her forties. When my father was hospitalized in San Francisco she drove to the city to visit him even though the drive terrified her. I sat in the back seat and was given the job of giving the money to the toll taker on the Bay Bridge. Once she drove away from the toll both before we completed that transaction.

My first wife Candy took care of my mom when she was dying. Candy discovered her one morning in the living room. She had apparently had gotten up in the middle of the night to have one last cigarette.

Huge SJSU Security Hole Remains Open

November 19, 2010


I have just returned from being on workers compensation for almost three months and am surprised (putting it mildly) to learn the security hole that gives student assistants access to the e-mail of every student, counselor, faculty, staff and administrator at SJSU is apparently still open. I posted about this in early August and have spoken to management, and been speaking to management, about this since issue since about March.

Why is hole still open? [See related post]

Google reportedly admits it downloaded personal data

October 27, 2010

Last summer our university migrated its employee e-mail to Google. According to a post in the Science and Tech section of Mail Online by Vanessa Allen, “The internet search giant was forced to confess it had downloaded personal data during its controversial Street View project, when it photographed virtually every street in Britain.” Allen said:

In an astonishing invasion of privacy, it admitted entire emails, web pages and even passwords were ‘mistakenly collected’ by antennae on its high-tech Street View cars. [Read More]

Because university e-mail between faculty, counselors and students is often very confidential this may be of concern to some university employees and students. According to Allen “Scotland Yard is already considering whether the company has broken the law.”