Current Negotiations Updates from the Provost
November 30, 2021
Dear Faculty Colleagues:
As we enter the final weeks of a fall semester that has marked a return to in-person teaching, learning, and making on our campuses after more than a year apart, we are inspired by the creativity and resilience of our students, and immensely grateful for the community of faculty and staff who have worked together to support them—and each other—through the disruptions of the pandemic.
Throughout these challenging months, CCA has negotiated in good faith with SEIU Local 1021 with the shared goal of reaching a collective bargaining agreement (CBA) to replace the initial CBA between the college and its regular, unranked faculty, which was signed into agreement in 2017 and expired in June 2020. Having worked together successfully to negotiate a fair, mutually beneficial CBA previously, we are confident that current negotiations will be successful as well.
The union has requested changes to 21 of the 30 articles of the previous CBA and proposed seven new articles, and the college has agreed to many of them. We have achieved agreement on seven of the 21 original articles, one of the five remaining new proposals (the union withdrew two of their new proposals in May 2021), and agreement on others is pending. Below, we’ve provided a summary of agreements reached and continuing negotiations in the current collective bargaining process.
Productive negotiations are also continuing between teams representing CCA and the staff bargaining unit to achieve a first CBA between the college and its represented staff. The two teams have reached agreement on 17 of the 29 proposals under negotiation, with agreement pending on several others. Despite the productivity of this process, however, SEIU Local 1021 has announced plans for a staff strike vote to take place next week.
Given that a strike is generally a tactic of last resort when negotiations have reached an impasse, it is disheartening that the union would call for such a move in the midst of ongoing, productive negotiations. Nevertheless, it is within the union’s rights to call for a strike vote among its members, and the college respects that right.
It remains the college’s position that bargaining is best done at the negotiating table, and we are confident that the agreement we have reached on many proposals, as well as the positive progress on other items, will lead to fair contracts that benefit the entire college—including its approximately 550 represented unranked faculty and 120 represented staff members.
Following are answers to some questions you may have regarding the status of proposals under negotiation, as well as the process and implications associated with a staff strike vote. Additional information, including the previous CBA, may be found on the Adjunct Faculty Union Portal page. If you have comments or questions about the collective bargaining process, please contact Associate Provost Julie Kirgis.
Tammy Rae Carland, provost
CCA Bargaining Team: Julie Kirgis (associate provost of faculty and academic partnerships), Em Meine (director of faculty affairs and records), and Mike Vartain (legal counsel and lead negotiator)
Strike Vote: Process and Implications
A union chapter may initiate a strike by a majority vote of its eligible, regular, voting members. In this case, the union is planning a strike vote among its staff members, not faculty. It is important to note that not all CCA faculty and staff in the bargaining units represented by SEIU Local 1021 are voting members. Only those who have completed membership forms are considered regular, voting members of the union and are eligible to participate in a strike vote. To find out if you are a member, contact your union representative.
If the majority of votes cast by eligible, regular, voting members are in favor of a strike, the union may call a strike. Employees within the bargaining unit may choose whether or not to participate in a strike. The college believes that a vote to strike is premature when negotiations are currently far from an impasse. Such an action would be a serious disservice to both our students and employees. However, we are making preparations to ensure that all essential functions are covered and our students can continue to work, learn, and live in a safe and supportive educational and residential environment.
Collective Bargaining Progress
The negotiating teams representing CCA and our adjunct faculty have held more than a dozen meetings since the previous CBA expired in June 2020. While the focus of several of the meetings was diverted from the new CBA to negotiating the unique challenges caused by the pandemic, the teams have reached tentative agreement on many proposals. Articles noted below refer to the previous CBA.
Labor-Management Committee (Article 5)
The union proposed regular training for Joint Labor Management Committee (JLMC) members (both adjuncts and administrators), and acknowledgement that SEIU staff may attend JLMC meetings. The college and union reached a tentative agreement (TA) in March 2021.
Bargaining Unit Information (Article 9)
The union requested that information about adjunct faculty whom the college anticipates will teach each semester be provided earlier than had been established in the previous CBA, and the college agreed (TA March 2021).
Classifications and Promotion (Article 14)
The union requested the following changes to Article 14 of the CBA, and the college agreed (TA initially achieved September 2021; the union has since reopened it for further negotiation):
- Faster timeline to promotion and promotion wage increases for adjunct faculty
- Retroactive pay increase upon successful promotion in APT committee
- Promotion from Adjunct I to Adjunct II on the basis of teaching-related performance alone, not on external professional practice
Access to the College’s Instructional Services and Materials (Article 19)
Agreement was reached on the payment of certain expenses when required to teach from home in a TA (May 2021) and pandemic-related Letter of Understanding (February 2021).
Processing of Unemployment Insurance Claims (Article 25)
TA reached in May 2021 on changes to improve the unemployment benefits process.
Leaves (Article 29)
The college agreed to a proposal that progress earned toward appointment eligibility will not be lost during protected family leave (TA April 2021).
Grievance Procedure (Article 30)
The college agreed to the addition of new arbitrators to the list of choices for settling grievances that come to arbitration (TA October 2021).
New article proposed by the union (not yet numbered)
The college will provide the union with annual demographic information about adjunct faculty (TA June 2021).
The union team has made a number of proposals that are currently pending discussion and resolution. These include proposals related to a CCA tuition remission plan for adjunct faculty, annual pay increases, pay for union stewards, and a public-transit commuter subsidy.
Each of the teams has made proposals the other disagrees with, which require further negotiation. These include:
Management Rights and Functions of the College (Article 7)
The union team proposed a reduction in the administration’s authority to manage operations and finances of the college, as compared with the previous CBA. The college disagrees and is preparing a counter proposal.
Attendance at CCA Board of Trustees Meetings
The union team proposed that union representatives be able to attend private meetings of CCA’s Board of Trustees. Although faculty, staff, and student representatives are often invited to attend board meetings, this proposal is not typical of private nonprofit college boards, and the college team has rejected this proposal.
No Strike/No Lockout (Article 6)
The college has proposed that the union should not ask faculty instructors to stop work and give over class teaching time to the union. The union team has rejected this proposal.
College’s Definition of Excellence of Courses (Article 13.A)
The college has proposed the existing language regarding excellence of courses be retained. The union team has rejected this proposal.
July 26, 2021
I’m writing with updates on the ongoing contract negotiations between CCA Administration and the Adjunct Faculty Union.
As I shared with you, in January, the two collective bargaining teams for the College and the Adjunct Faculty Union agreed that the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Services mediator would join the negotiations in the hopes to accelerate progress.
The two teams met during the spring semester under the facilitation of the federal mediator. During the facilitated negotiations, numerous portions of the future CBA were agreed upon in documents called “tentative agreements.” I shared this information with you in earlier communications which are posted on the Academic Affairs portal site.
In the negotiation meeting held on June 15, the two teams conducted a joint overview of the issues that have been settled and the range of non-economic issues that have yet to be settled.
In collective bargaining negotiations, the non-economic matters usually refer to the many parts of the CBA that are not directly included in payroll costs.
Payroll costs include salaries for courses and special assignments, and in this case, the Union is asking for money for steward compensation. There are additional economic items that the Union is proposing, which do not fall into payroll.
The two teams agreed on June 15 that a good next step is for the College to prepare and send to the Union a “comprehensive response” on all non-economic issues. This is not a final proposal but is the College’s answer to the Union on a number of the overriding issues that are currently unresolved.
A “comprehensive response” on all non-economic issues by a party in CBA negotiations is a way to move the negotiations forward on multiple different areas all at once. It takes the negotiations off the piecemeal, single-issue-per-meeting form of negotiations and helps the two sides get aligned to settle the non-economic issues. This lays the groundwork for the final stage, which is the negotiation of the economic matters. Sometimes, as in our 2017 negotiations, this is finalized during the last week of the process.
On June 21, 2021 the College sent the Union the major “comprehensive response” as promised the week before. This document notes where many tentative agreements have been reached; notes where the College is considering some of the ideas of the remaining Union proposals on non-economic matters; and restates to the Union where the College finds some of the union proposals to be unworkable and not to be further negotiated.
At this time, the College team is expecting the Union to prepare its own comprehensive proposal that will reciprocate that of the College and thus enable the parties to increase the pace of progress at the negotiations table.
The two teams are working with the mediator to select dates for future negotiation meetings.
Tammy Rae Carland
April 7, 2021
I’m writing with some updates on recent negotiations between CCA Administration and the Adjunct Faculty Union.
Several months ago, the two collective bargaining teams for the College and the Adjunct Faculty Union agreed that the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Services mediator would join the negotiations in the hopes to accelerate progress.
The two teams have now met three times under the facilitation of the federal mediator, Jas Basi, on March 5, March 15 and March 26. The next meeting is scheduled for April 20, which was the earliest date that both teams and the federal mediator could find a common time to convene.
The two teams have jointly reached tentative agreements on two articles: Article 5, Joint Labor Management Committee (JLMC) and Article 9, Bargaining Unit Information. Article 5 is foundational to administering the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) because it establishes the forum where union and administration representatives discuss operational issues that actualize the legal language of the CBA. Article 9 describes information that the College regularly provides to the Union about adjunct teaching and personnel data, so that the Union can perform its representational role.
In the recent negotiation meetings the two teams also discussed Article 14, Classifications and Promotions, but did not yet reach agreement. On this important topic, the Union proposed to remove the long-standing practice at CCA that was agreed to in the CBA from 2017, that adjunct faculty are evaluated on their professional accomplishments in their field of architecture, art, design or the humanities. The College administration proposed to retain the expectation that professional accomplishments are a proper subject for evaluation of adjuncts.
The two bargaining teams made some progress in negotiating Article 29, Leave of Absence, but have not yet reached agreement. The teams believe they could probably reach agreement on this section of the new CBA later, once progress is achieved in other areas of negotiations.
Tammy Rae Carland
February 19, 2021
I hope you are all well, safe, and healthy. Since the last update, there have been several collective bargaining meetings between the Union’s bargaining team and the College’s bargaining team, with the most recent taking place three weeks ago on January 21. 2021 and the next one to take place on March 5, 2021.
These meetings have culminated in the signing on February 11, 2021 of a Letter of Understanding. The Letter of Understanding will remain in effect until June 30, 2021. A copy of the Letter of Understanding will soon be linked on the Faculty Union Current Negotiations page in Portal.
A Letter of Understanding is similar to a collective bargaining agreement (CBA); however, the Letter of Understanding covers only a select number of subjects and is usually of shorter duration. A CBA covers a far wider, more complete set of employment topics and lasts several years, usually.
The two teams will be negotiating the full CBA this spring to replace the CBA that expired last year on June 30, 2020.
The new Letter of Understanding covers the following subjects:
- Health & Safety
- Worker’s Compensation
- Medical Leave of Absence from Work Due to COVID-19 Issues
- Health Benefits
- Reimbursement for Work at Home Expenses
- Using Paid Sick Leave Account .
- Local Laws
- Dispute Resolution/Arbitration
- If Course Assignments Cannot be Completed Due to Health Issues: Pay For Substitutes; and
- Pay for training others on remote teaching technology.
To aid in the CBA negotiation process, the College team has requested facilitation at future negotiations by the U.S. Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service, which has already assigned a commissioner. The Commissioner is Ms. Jasmeer Basi and she will schedule and oversee the next bargaining sessions.
In the last round of CBA negotiations that reached the CBA in 2017, the FMCS was present in the final months of the negotiations and when the final process ended with a full contract. An FAQ from the previous negotiations that explains the work of the FMCS is available on Portal.
All my best,
October 23, 2020
The two negotiation teams, the SEIU Local 1021 team and the College management team held their second negotiation meeting last Friday October 16, via Zoom.
At the meeting, the College team provided the Union with the College’s proposals for the Covid-19 letter of understanding for unranked faculty.
The College’s proposals deal with remote work by adjuncts, effects on work that arise from the pandemic orders of the government; absences for family care, and Union-College cooperation related to Covid-19.
The College also provided the Union team with a copy of the Local 1021/CCA staff Covid-19 letter of understanding and the College team proposed that parts of it be used to further develop the unranked faculty letter of understanding. The College team expressed its desire to move quickly to reach agreement with the Union team on a letter of understanding.
In addition to the negotiating team, the Union had also invited more than twenty additional unranked faculty as observers to attend the meeting. The members of the College management team were not provided any prior notice that anyone beyond the negotiating teams would be in attendance. As a result, the College informed the Union team of its wish to develop proposals for ground rules for future meetings, including an agreement on an appropriate role for limited numbers of observers and for other protocols to advance the opportunity for orderly negotiating meetings.
As a reminder, our first CBA expired at the end of June, 2020 and we are currently in negotiations for our second one.
The next meeting date has not yet been finalized. I will continue to provide updates as negotiations take place.
Tammy Rae Carland
September 18, 2020
The first negotiation meeting in this new round of adjunct faculty collective bargaining negotiations took place last week on Friday, September 11.
At the negotiation meeting, held over Zoom, the Union bargaining team delivered to the College bargaining team (via email) a part of the Union’s opening proposals.
The Union walked the College team through the 20 pages of its partial opening proposals and stated some of the Union’s intents in making these proposals. As the College had not seen the proposals before, the College will study the language of the proposals and come to the next bargaining session prepared to ask questions regarding the meaning and rationale for its proposals. The Union agreed to this agenda.
The Union’s proposals were delivered by the Union in the form of tracked changes to what the Union said was the 2017-2020 CBA; however, the version of the CBA that the Union used to make their changes was an earlier draft version, and not the one that is legally in effect. Thus, some clean up to its proposals will soon be needed by the Union.
As a reminder, the initial CBA went into effect on May 1, 2017 for a three year period (plus two months) with an expiration date of June 30, 2020.
The impact of the pandemic beginning in March 2020 unfortunately took the two teams away from the task of negotiating a new CBA in the spring and summer. Because the CBA was set to expire on June 30, 2020 without a new CBA having yet been negotiated, and with the intention to give the community a degree of greater stability during the pandemic, the college proposed to the union that the two teams agree to extend the CBA in its present form for 24 months. The union declined to agree to this proposal, as was its legal right.
At the negotiation meeting, the Union agreed that this week it would email the College the remainder of its opening contract proposals. The College received this information on Thursday, September 17. The next meeting date has not yet been finalized.
Tammy Rae Carland
September 4, 2020
A new round of collective bargaining negotiations is beginning between the college and Local 1021 of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), covering unranked faculty in the positions of Adjunct I, Adjunct II, and Senior Adjunct.
The college’s participation in the negotiation of the collective bargaining agreement (CBA) is coordinated by the office of the provost and overseen by the provost. As such, I plan to issue reports on negotiations regularly and this communication is the initial report. You can look for ongoing reports, past reports, the ratified CBA and updates on the work of the Joint Labor Management Committee (JLMC) on the Academic Affairs portal site: here.
The initial CBA went into effect on May 1, 2017 for a three year period (plus two months) with an expiration date of June 30, 2020.
The impact of the pandemic beginning in March 2020 unfortunately took the two teams away from the task of negotiating a new CBA in the spring and summer.
Because the CBA was set to expire on June 30, 2020 without a new CBA having yet been negotiated, and with the intention to give the community a degree of greater stability during the pandemic, the college proposed to the union that the two teams agree to extend the CBA in its present form for 24 months. The union declined to agree to this proposal, as was its legal right.
The college and the union are currently treating the expired CBA as if its contract provisions are still in effect. This is the usual custom in U.S. labor negotiations when labor and management plan to negotiate during an interlude between two agreements.
Formal negotiations are scheduled to begin on Friday, September 11. Informal discussions between the two chief negotiators, Mike Vartain (legal counsel for the college) and Nato Green (SEIU Local 1021 Campaign Coordinator) have taken place throughout the summer by phone and email.
At the present time, it is expected that at the September 11 negotiations meeting some proposals for a new CBA will be presented by the union. Because neither side has yet presented any proposals, it is not possible to estimate how soon a new agreement will be reached.
During the three years of the first CBA, the college and the union jointly administered the terms of the CBA and many issues and even disagreements were hashed out in the JLMC.
On two occasions, the union charged that the college had made a decision against the rules of the CBA. In both cases, an impartial arbitrator concluded that the college was in compliance. During the term of the CBA, the college once charged that the union was out of compliance with the CBA, but the college decided not to elevate the charge to an adversarial arbitration.
I have confidence that our joint management of the CBA for the past three years will continue with adherence and good will, and we will reach a mutual agreement for the second CBA with our labor partners.
Tammy Rae Carland
February 24, 2017
Dear CCA Community,
I am writing to provide the community with an update on union contract negotiations for our part-time unranked faculty.
Last evening the negotiating teams reached full mutual agreement on all terms!
The normal union contract procedure is that this agreement is considered "tentative" until the unranked faculty members have the opportunity to vote on it, which will take place over the next several weeks. Additionally, members of the college bargaining committee and President Beal will also be meeting next week with members of the ranked faculty advisory committee to discuss the tentative agreements. I will report back with more details in the near future. I see the reaching of the tentative agreement as a positive and fair outcome that strengthens our commitment to all faculty members and reaffirms our dedication to academic excellence. Please join me in thanking the members of both bargaining teams for the time and energy they invested in the bargaining process and its outcomes.
Tammy Rae Carland
June 2, 2016
Dear CCA Community,
I write with an update on the status of our negotiations with SEIU Local 1021, which represents our unranked faculty in the positions of lecturer, senior lecturer, adjunct, and senior adjunct.
During the most recent negotiation sessions in May, the bargaining teams from CCA and SEIU Local 1021 reached tentative agreement on important proposals involving performance evaluations and job descriptions. At the most recent bargaining session the teams discussed issues related to length of service and advancement through classification.
CCA’s bargaining team has worked with the assistance of the federal mediator to schedule the next session for June 22 with representatives of SEIU Local 1021 and the unranked faculty members on the union’s bargaining team.
I have directed the college bargaining team to stay committed to concluding negotiations as soon as possible, with the goal of obtaining a contract that ensures the quality and value of instruction for our students, does not adversely affect our ranked faculty, and provides for an equitable solution for non-ranked faculty. Once the negotiation teams have reached tentative agreements on all aspects of the contract I remain committed to reviewing the proposed contract with the ranked faculty advisory group prior to final approval.
Below is a list of all the tentative agreements that have been reached at this point.
Tammy Rae Carland
As of June 1, 2016 Tentative Agreements have been reached by SEIU and CCA on the following issues:
- Performance Evaluations
- Job Descriptions
- There will be a course cancellation payment
- Dispute and Grievance Procedures
- Equal Employment Policies
- Unranked Faculty on Committees:
- Labor/Management Working Committee
- Academic Freedom and Professional Ethics
- Three Year Length of Contract
- Campus Safety and Protection from Violence
- Faculty Access to College Instructional Materials
- Rules Regarding Discharge (Course Specific)
- Applications for College Job Vacancies
- Committee Participation by Unranked Faculty
- Union Rights to College Information
- Leave of Absence for Union Stewards
May 3, 2016
Dear Members of the CCA Community,
I am writing with an update on the college's negotiations with SEIU Local 1021, which represents our unranked faculty in the positions of lecturer, senior lecturer, adjunct, and senior adjunct.
The college's negotiating team and the Local 1021 team have engaged in regular negotiation sessions since December 2014.
Thus far, the sessions have resulted in tentative agreements on nearly three-quarters of the complete collective bargaining agreement. We have several additional bargaining sessions scheduled in May.
The college’s negotiating team has set a goal to complete a full, tentative collective bargaining agreement by the end of May.
The college’s negotiating team consists of Director of Payroll and Benefits Amy Flaherty, Professor Donald Fortescue, Associate Provost Dr. Thomas O. Haakenson, Dean of Design Leslie Carol Roberts, and Mike Vartain, legal counsel for the college.
The SEIU negotiating team consists of Senior Adjunct Hugh Behm-Steinberg, Senior Adjunct Alisa Golden, Senior Adjunct Rob Hugel, Senior Lecturer David Skolnick, and Senior Lecturer Noga Wizansky, as well as Nato Green and Jessica Lawless from SEIU Local 1021.
I will continue to report to the CCA community on the status of negotiations.
Tammy Rae Carland
March 25, 2016
Dear Members of the CCA Community,
I am writing with an update on the college's negotiations with members of SEIU Local 1021, which represents our adjunct faculty.
The college's negotiating team and members of SEIU Local 1021 have engaged in regular negotiation sessions throughout January, February, and March, including a meeting earlier this week. Federal government mediator Joel Schaffer has been moderating these sessions. The college proposed bringing in Mr. Schaeffer when negotiations had stalled in December 2015. SEIU agreed and continues to agree to have him present at the negotiations.
The college’s negotiating team is Director of Payroll and Benefits Amy Flaherty, Associate Provost Dr. Thomas O. Haakenson, Dean of Design Leslie Carol Roberts, and Mike Vartain, legal counsel for the college. Professor Donald Fortescue joined the college's team in early March when I began my duties as provost.
Thus far, the sessions have resulted in tentative agreements on approximately half of the 30 sections of a complete collective bargaining agreement. Upcoming proposals from both teams on the remaining sections will begin at the next session on April 8, and will continue through other sessions scheduled for the rest of the month.
Both the college and the union teams have expressed the intention to work hard in the upcoming negotiations with the hope of resolving all outstanding issues in the next several months.
The college will continue to update the community about the status of these negotiations.
Tammy Rae Carland
September 23, 2015
I am writing to give you an update on the negotiations with SEIU Local 1021, which represents our lecturer and adjunct unranked faculty, and to share with you a status report from the CCA negotiating team.
The CCA negotiating team (those who meet in negotiations with the Local 1021 bargaining team):
- Dean of Fine Arts Tammy Rae Carland
- Director of Payroll and Benefits Amy Flaherty
- Associate Provost Dr. Thomas O. Haakenson
- Dean of Design Leslie Carol Roberts
- and Mike Vartain (legal counsel for the college)
On August 13, Local 1021 first presented CCA’s negotiating team with the union’s full contract demands for salaries, benefits, course loads and appointments, governance processes, and other important issues.
Since August 13, the two negotiation teams have had two lengthy meetings to begin jointly analyzing these proposals. Further meetings will take place throughout the fall semester and most likely into the spring. During this period of time, the college will be able to present its responses and its contract counter proposals.
Although the negotiating teams from CCA and Local 1021 have been meeting for nine months, it is still relatively early in negotiations. It was just five weeks ago that the union gave CCA its comprehensive proposal. For context, it is important to note that the adjunct faculties at other Bay Area colleges, who voted to be represented by SEIU many months before CCA’s faculty, have not yet reached an initial bargaining agreement either.
A productive contract can only be achieved through compromise with the two teams doing the hard work in the negotiating room. There is still much work to do, and with continued effort by both bargaining teams, I am confident that a fair contract will be reached.
I urge you to read the report from the CCA negotiating team, which includes a summary of the union’s current contract demands.
As the negotiation now proceeds into its more important phases, the CCA negotiating team will report more frequently to the faculty on the progress and key issues of the bargaining.
Additional information also will be posted periodically on the Academic Affairs section of the college website.