November 8 Election
We all can and must campaign for Proposition 55

Remarks to California State University Board of Trustees, September 20, 2016

by Lillian Taiz, Professor, History, Cal State Los Angeles
Political Action & Legislative Chair, California Faculty Association

Good afternoon. Lillian Taiz, Chair of CFA’s Political Action/Legislative Committee and past president of CFA.

There are many issues on which the California Faculty Association and this Board of Trustees disagree. However, while we have and will continue to find ourselves on different sides of particular issues, we believe we share a common interest—a fruitful future for the California State University and our students.

With this in mind, CFA is ready to work with you and we hope that you call upon us when our interests align. As you know by now, we know how to organize, we work tirelessly for the CSU, and we have a broad range of allies that you do not.

I’d like to point out one issue on which we can work together immediately—doing everything that we can to see that, even in this election’s crowded field of initiatives Proposition 55 passes.

We believe that supporting Prop 55 is a “no-brainer” for all of us and we are pleased to see that you are discussing endorsing this important initiative today. [NOTE: The CSU Board of Trustees voted to endorse Prop 55 at their September 20-21, 2016 meeting.]

The state’s disinvestment in the CSU has taken a terrible toll on our system and now, just as we have been turning that trend around, is not the time to risk losing $250 million from our budget. Our recovery is precarious and we must be prepared to fight like the devil to keep our system on the right track.

For CFA that has meant making a financial commitment AND taking action. Just 10 days ago, hundreds of CFA members spent their Saturday logging in hundreds of hours of political action—walking precincts and making phone calls in support of Prop 55.

During this campaign, we are committed to doing thousands of hours of political activity to help Prop 55 pass including reaching out to our members and the members of our brother and sister unions and voters across California.

This is our opportunity to do what politically astute people do all the time—recognize that we will be on opposite sides of some issues; but rather than expect the impossible, work together when it is possible and when it would be good for the CSU.

I would like to take this opportunity to invite Chancellor White and any interested members of the board, including the ex-officio officers, to join us as we walk precincts, do phone-banking and spread the word about the importance supporting Prop 55.