Questions and Answers Regarding the CUE Strike June 13-15, 2005

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                April 2005

June 8, 2005


Important questions and answers for UC employees regarding the CUE `clerical employee strike scheduled for June 13-15, 2005


CUE, the union representing UC’s clerical employees, has notified its members of its intent to strike on June 13-15, 2005.  It is critical that employees understand the implications of such an action, so they can make an informed choice about whether to consider participating in this strike.  Below are answers to some important questions.


Q.        Is this strike protected under state labor laws? 


A.       Under state law, any union that engages in or supports a work stoppage, such as a strike, before the impasse procedures required by state law have been completed, is presumed to have committed an unfair labor practice.

    The University believes that because CUE's planned strike has been announced prior to the completion of impasse procedures, it is therefore unprotected under state labor laws.  In fact, the CUE negotiations are not even at the impasse stage at this point. 

   The University has bargained in good faith for clerical employees throughout these negotiations in an effort to reach a fair and equitable settlement.


Q.        What will UC do if clerical employees strike?


A.       If any employee does not report to work as assigned, the University will presume, absent medical certification, that any absences from work during any declared strike period are strike related. 

·         Authorization for an absence from work (e.g., vacation leave) may or may not be given, depending on operational necessity and without regard to the employee’s reason for the requested leave.


Q.        If a strike is called, does that mean I will not be able to come to work?


A.         No. Under the labor laws, employees are free to make up their own minds about crossing a picket line and continuing to work.




Q.        If I'm a dues-paying member of the union, am I obligated to participate in the strike? Can I be penalized for not striking?


A.         No employee is ever under any obligation to strike. Unions are legally prohibited from threatening or coercing members in other ways to keep them from coming to work.  However, some unions have the right to levy fines against members, but not agency fee payers, who choose to work during a strike, including a sympathy strike. The employee needs to contact her/his local union representative regarding possible penalties for not striking.  The University will not deduct union fines from employees’ paychecks.


Q.        What should I do if I want to work but I am being blocked from doing so or I'm confronted by picketers or striking employees?


A        Pickets are lawful so long as they are peaceful, conducted only on public property (i.e., sidewalks), do not block access for other employees, do not interfere with the normal course of business, and do not prohibit non-striking employees from working. 

·         The University will assist employees who want to work by providing security or transportation across the picket lines. 

·         In addition, non-striking employees should avoid confrontations and need not respond to any comments that picketers may direct at them.  Non-striking employees should not invite or engage in any exchanges, which might inflame the situation. 

·         If an employee feels s/he is being harassed or prevented from working by picketers or striking employees, the employee should notify their supervisor or Karren Yun in Employee/Labor Relations (987-0815).


Q.        If I come to work, what pay and benefits will I receive?


A.         Employees who come to work will receive the same compensation and benefits as they did before the work stoppage.


Q.        If I don't come to work as a result of a CUE strike, will I continue to receive my pay and benefits, and may I use compensatory time or vacation for the time that I miss?


A.         Employees will not be paid for time lost due to participating in a strike. Employees who participate in a strike will not be allowed to use compensatory time or vacation leave to make up for the pay they lose because of striking. Benefits that are affected by the percentage of time worked during the month may be affected.


Q.        Am I permitted to talk to my supervisor or unit manager about any of this?


A.         Absolutely. Your manager is another resource for answers and information.