CFA Membership & Organizing Chair Nicola Walters on what we’re bargaining for.

After our negotiating sessions last week, CFA and CSU bargaining teams agreed to extend our current Collective Bargaining Agreement by another month, now expiring on September 30.

We have four dates for bargaining in September, and we remain far apart on salary, anti-racism changes in evaluations and safety, academic freedom, rights and job security for non-tenure track faculty, and workload. On every campus, we plan to meet and reach out to faculty about the state of bargaining, and what this year will look like if we are unable to reach an agreement at the table.

The CFA Bargaining Team has put forward all of our proposals and is eager for the CSU team to respond to our reasonable, well researched propositions to bring fairness and security to our tenure-track faculty, lecturers, librarians, coaches, and counselors.

At the bargaining table last week, CFA’s team presented additional research and information in support of expanding parental leave, lecturer rights, and alternatives to policing in campus communities.

On Friday, CSU management presented, in general terms, the idea of a new teaching classification. Management’s pitch – which was purely conceptual – would create a new category of faculty between lecturer faculty and tenure-track faculty that removes the criteria for research, scholarship, or creative activities that are normally required to obtain tenure. The CFA Bargaining Team pressed for details about objectives, workload, pay scale, and more. The CSU team was unprepared to answer most of our inquiries, and our Bargaining Team is left to wonder how the concept is responsive to CFA proposals that improve working conditions for lecturers (including contingent coaches, counselors, and librarians). Many on the team worry that this classification would be limited to professional colleges.

“Management floated a concept that clearly wasn’t fully developed” said Vang Vang, CFA Treasurer and Bargaining Team member. “We asked numerous questions that they couldn’t answer. We have, in contrast, well developed proposals that directly address job security for contingent faculty that we could be spending this time on.”

The CFA Bargaining Team has made several proposals that would improve job security and stability for lecturers, and which would provide our non-tenure track colleagues with a pathway to permanency. These proposals are meant to address the needs of our contingent faculty.

“The CSU team’s classification idea was not a formal proposal and was very short on details,” said Meghan O’Donnell, Associate Vice President of Lecturers, North, and Bargaining Team member. “What did seem clear, however, is that their concept does not in any way respond to our very detailed and thoughtful proposals to address contingent faculty working conditions and pay in the CSU. We’ve worked hard to develop proposals that will go far in addressing the inequity and injustice built into the contingent labor system that the CSU has maintained for decades to balance its budgets on the backs of the lowest paid and most marginalized faculty in the CSU. So far, the CSU’s team has done nothing to address those concerns at the bargaining table.” 

At last week’s negotiations, the CFA and CSU bargaining teams also came to Tentative Agreements to maintain status quo on 18 articles. We also reached Tentative Agreement on Article 35: Outside Employment.

On sabbatical leaves, the CFA team successfully pushed back on management proposals to restrict the purpose of sabbaticals and potentially interfere with faculty activities while on leave. Both sides tentatively agreed to language that provides clarification on leave deferrals, mandates that no extra work assigned can be given to faculty on sabbatical, and expands professional currency.

“Our Bargaining Team negotiated forcefully to ensure that faculty on sabbatical can continue to participate in the affairs of the university if they desire to do so,” said Sharon Elise, Associate Vice President for Racial & Social Justice, South, and Bargaining Team member. “We prevented addition of language that could effectively increase sabbatical outcomes reporting requirements. Management was persuaded by our arguments, and we have tentative agreement on a revised Article 27.”

We’ll keep you updated as bargaining progresses. CFA chapter leaders are also scheduling campus bargaining meetings – be on the lookout for your chapter meeting.

In the meantime, faculty can read CFA and CSU proposals and review our research at

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