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MENTAL HEALTH COUNSELORS LEAD THE WAY FOR BETTER CARE ON CAMPUSES: May is Mental Health Awareness Month; it’s also the month that the Senate Appropriations Committee in the state legislature will take up SB 968 (Pan), a CFA-sponsored bill to improve the ratio between mental health counselors and students on CSU and community college campuses. CFA’s Counselors’ Committee has been talking with decision-makers, going to the public through news interviews, and getting the word out on campuses with “Tissues for Issues”—large visual displays that depict the critical anxiety students sometimes confront on their road to a degree (photo).

CFA Counselors Committee Chair Mimi Bommersbach, noting the long waits students face to get a wellness appointment, says, “We must make the public aware of this crisis because it’s not good enough to address tragedies; we need to help students promptly at the time they need the help.” Learn more on the CFA Counselors Committee web page.

CFA SUPPORTS UC STAFF ON STRIKE: CFA leaders around the state have joined UC staff on picket lines this week as they wage a 3-day strike over low pay. San Francisco CFA Chapter leader Sheila Tully addressed a picket line rally at UC San Francisco.

San Francisco CFA Chapter President James Martel wrote of the picket line he joined Monday at UC Berkeley: “It was wonderful to see all of those green shirts at the picket line for the first day of AFSCME 3299’s strike. The atmosphere was festive and fierce and the workers there were absolutely determined. I feel they are catching the wave from Arizona and West Virginia to say no more to endless cuts and privatization and Janus, the beginning of a serious and committed fight for what public education should really be about—community and solidarity.”

NOW IS A GOOD TIME TO REGISTER FOR AUGUST COCAL CONFERENCE: The Coalition of Contingent Academic Labor, a network for faculty off the tenure line in US, Mexico, and Canada, holds its 13th Biannual International Conference at San Jose State Aug 3-5. Reduced-rate early-bird registration ends in less than a week on May 15. So, now is the time. CFA members may contact your campus CFA Chapter about assistance with registration.

The conference is open to any Lecturer. It seeks to increase “awareness of the precarious situation for contingent faculty in higher education, organize for action, and build solidarity among our colleagues.” Click here to learn more and register.

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