The Association Employees Union (AEU) has always had a history of strong and progressive advocacy for the members we represent. Our membership consists of the staff members of the California School Employees Association (CSEA).
AEU brothers and sisters statewide drive the advocacy and progressive labor agenda for the biggest union for classified employees in the state of California. Unlike most other unions, CSEA has a large and diverse staff that have very specialized training in the specific fields they have chosen as careers.
AEU is proud of the fact that CSEA is not a “churn and burn” employer that takes advantage of its labor staff as many other unions do. We want to ensure that is never the case and that staff chooses to stay at CSEA because they are a good employer.
We are grateful to remain employed during this global-wide pandemic. We have the opportunity to continue to provide the stellar service we give to the CSEA membership every day, and not have to worry about our families and ourselves in these unprecedented times.
Unfortunately, our 3-year contract is set to expire on May 31st. It was unforeseen that we would be hit with COVID-19 and a shelter in place order during our successor negotiations period. We understand that the timing is unfortunate, but that always seems to be the case. We have had a recession during negotiations, Friedrichs during negotiations, Janus during negotiations, and now COVID-19 occurring while we are trying to negotiate a new successor agreement. AEU is looking for stability and safety for our membership and we believe these proposals provide that.
Some of our proposals may seem excessive, and it may seem like we are asking for a lot of changes, but the AEU governing documents require input from our members, and it requires the AEU Bargaining Team to consider every proposal, and have the membership vote on every proposal.
This final document attached is the product of that process. Do we expect to achieve success on every item? Of course not, but we do expect to have a good discussion and spirited exchange and bargain in good faith. Every proposal we have come with has a reason and a priority ranking for it.
Our membership is engaged heavily in the bargaining process. The goal for AEU is to have a life-changing contract, and we do understand that AEU and CSEA are symbiotic and we must work together for CSEA to remain the best classified employee union there is.
AEU members are everywhere CSEA success stories exist. We are the hard-working staff members making sure our CSEA members have the best contracts and worker protections in the advocacy business.
There is nothing wrong with asking for the items we are asking for. We would do the exact same for our CSEA members in the field. Our contract should be the gold standard. The contract everyone wants to strive to have. CSEA should be the employer everyone wants to work for. That is our goal.
CSEA like any other employer needs to pay competitive pay rates and benefits to its comparative labor market. It's important to have a bilateral goal with CSEA and AEU. Mutual agreement to maintain competitive pay and benefits leads to successful recruitment and retention of the talented staff of CSEA.
We look forward to a meaningful review of market comparisons, which lends itself to a successful CSEA organization by maintaining labor stability.
Good agreements are the product of professional dialogue, understanding, respect, and compromise. It is in that spirit that AEU approaches the negotiations with CSEA for our successor agreement.
Initial Proposals for AEU and CSEA are attached below.