On Tuesday, January 30, the Higher Education and Employment Advancement Committee of the Connecticut General Assembly held a forum on the proposed Community College Consolidation, known as “Students First.” The forum can be watched on demand from CT-N here.
CSCU President, Mark Ojakian, was questioned by legislators for nearly two hours about the proposed consolidation. President Ojakian shared the following PowerPoint Presentation with the Committee:
Several faculty and staff from the 4Cs, CSU-AAUP and SUOAF-AFSCME attended to testify against the consolidation, along with students from the community colleges and representatives of the various community college foundations.
While 4Cs President Bryan Bonina was not able to testify in person, he submitted testimony electronically, which can be read here. Other testimony can be viewed here.
Many media outlets covered the forum:
ebenson January 31st, 2018
Posted In: Uncategorized
On January 20, 2018, on the one-year anniversary of the first Women’s March, people of all backgrounds will come together in Hartford to defend women’s rights, workers’ rights, civil rights, immigrant rights, and much more.
So please join us at the State Capitol Building on Saturday, Jan. 20, at 12:30 p.m. as we launch the 2018 Women’s March agenda. This includes an important section on workers’ rights that, in part, reads:
“All women should be paid equitably, with access to affordable childcare, sick days, healthcare, paid family leave, and healthy work environments. All workers – including domestic and farm workers, undocumented and migrant workers – must have the right to organize and fight for a living wage.”
There will be a march at 12:30 p.m. from the north side of the Corning Fountain
to arrive at the Capitol at 1:00 p.m.
Those with limited mobility or those who do not wish to march can just gather at the Capitol.
Women’s March in Hartford
Connecticut State Capitol, 210 Capitol Ave, Hartford
Saturday, January 20
12:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.
- Connecticut AFL-CIO President Lori Pelletier
- U.S. Representative Elizabeth Esty
- State Senator Beth Bye
- Hartford City Councilwoman Wildaliz Bermudez
- CWEALF Executive Director Kate Farrar
- Make the Road CT Organizer Barbara Lopez
- & many more!
For more information about parking, public transportation, food, and more, please visit:
ebenson January 19th, 2018
Posted In: Events
ebenson October 27th, 2017
Posted In: Uncategorized
The budget passed by the House and Senate over the weekend hurts our students and our colleges. In President Ojakian’s words, “Early Saturday morning the Connecticut General Assembly passed a budget that intends to cut approximately $93M from the CSCU system over the next two years. Funding for developmental education is completely eliminated, while the Roberta Willis scholarship fund is phased out…This amounts to an unprecedented denial of access and support to public higher education students in Connecticut.” Read the full statement here
The budget would also dismantle our fundamental collective bargaining rights by:
- Removing funding for cost-of-living increases for retired state employees;
- Unilaterally changing how pensions are calculated– even for years already worked, and for all years through 2027;
- And increasing pension contributions for ALL state employees to 7%.
If this budget were passed into law, SEBAC would be forced to litigate and defend our contractual and contract rights.
The Governor has pledged to veto the budget, but the Yankee Institute is encouraging people to contact the Governor and ask him to sign the budget.
We are asking you to do two things:
- Please contact your legislators to demand restoration of funding to the Community Colleges and the Willis Scholarship. You can locate your legislators and view our template email by visiting this link.
- Please email Governor Malloy to ask him to stand by his pledge to veto this budget and to restore funding for CSCU and the Willis Scholarship in the budget compromise. You can email him here.
ebenson September 20th, 2017
Posted In: Political Action, Unions
On July 31, the Connecticut Senate passed the SEBAC Tentative Agreement by a vote of 19-18, thanks to the tie breaking vote of Lt. Gov. Wyman. Last week, the Agreements were approved by the House by a margin of 78-72.
The SEBAC Tentative Agreement can be viewed here
. The 4Cs Tentative Agreement can be viewed here
(note: there are multiple agreements).
SEBAC Statement on Passage
“We commend the State Senators who voted yes and Lieutenant Governor Wyman for doing the right thing on behalf of Connecticut and its working and middle-class families.
The passage of the SEBAC Agreement and its companion 34 bargaining unit agreements secures $1.5 billion in savings in the biennium and $24 billion over the next two decades while protecting vital public services, which all Connecticut residents depend on. We urge the Senate to use the momentum of this positive result to move on to a budget that serves the interest of all of Connecticut’s 3.5 million ordinary residents, rather than consolidating the power and privilege of the wealthiest few and the largest corporations.
In Connecticut, the very wealthy pay a lower percentage of their income in state and local taxes than working and middle-class families do. This is a level of unfairness that our state just can’t afford and we hope the General Assembly passes a fair and moral budget for all Connecticut residents.”
ebenson August 1st, 2017
Posted In: Contract Negotiations, SEBAC
Thank you to everyone who participated in the vote on the 4Cs and SEBAC Tentative Agreements.
All three tentative agreements – SEBAC, 4Cs full-time CBA, and 4Cs part-time CBA – were overwhelmingly approved by you. Please see the attached
for our CBA results.
In addition, all Connecticut SEBAC voting unit members unanimously approved the SEBAC tentative agreement. Please see the SEBAC press release here
The support of these agreements by our members sends an important message to every Connecticut citizen. Together, we have stated loud and clear that we are willing to do our part to assure Connecticut Community Colleges continue to deliver affordable, high quality education and excellent services into the future. This is what we do, and we do it extremely well!
Your support for these agreements is a reflection of how much 4Cs members care about protecting Connecticut Community Colleges, our students, and our communities.
Thank you for your dedication and sacrifice.
Bryan R. Bonina, President
Congress of CT Community Colleges
ebenson July 18th, 2017
Posted In: 4Cs President, SEBAC, Unions
As you know, the 4Cs and SEBAC have reached Tentative Agreements on wages, benefits, and working conditions. This email is to inform you that voting on these agreements will take place from July 1 through July 14. All 4Cs members will have a vote on two issues:
- 4Cs Contract Vote for issues such as wages and working conditions and language changes
- SEBAC Vote for retirement and healthcare
Detailed information on both agreements is available on the 4Cs website. Look under “Issues” for either the SEBAC 2017 or 4Cs Contract Negotiations.
SEBAC leaders are recommending a YES vote on both the SEBAC and individual bargaining unit Tentative Agreements. Further, the 4Cs Delegate Assembly has recommended approval of the 4Cs Tentative Agreement. It is clear that the gains all unions have made in the past are at significant risk. Voting yes on these agreements provide a level of security for members, our families, co-workers and those we serve in a time of great uncertainty.
What do ‘No’ votes mean? If you vote no on the 4Cs Contract, we will likely have to go to arbitration for wages and other economic issues and NO job security. It is likely that the General Assembly would vote down any contract or arbitrated award that includes raises. If you vote no on the SEBAC Agreement, there is a real possibility of losing collective bargaining after the current SEBAC Agreement expires in 2022 and no individual contracts.
We urge all of our members to vote on this important issue. A letter is being mailed to all members with your voting credentials, but you don’t have to wait to vote. To vote now:
- Please visit https://eballot4.votenet.com/seiu1973/.
- Enter your Last Name
- Enter your State Employee ID number (a six digit number found on your pay stub) as your password
- Mark your ballot
- Confirm your selections and click “submit.”
The vote will be open through July 14. Please remember that only dues-paying members are allowed to vote (which requires that you have signed a membership form). If you are unsure of your status, please contact the 4Cs office at 860.296.5172. If you wish to change your membership status, you can fill out a membership form online here.
Once the membership voting process has completed on July 14, and if all agreements are approved, the SEBAC agreement and all the contracts for the individual bargaining units would be presented to the General Assembly as a single item for approval. The General Assembly can either vote yes on all the agreements or no on all the agreements.
If you have any questions or any problems logging in to vote, please call the office at 860.296.5172.
ebenson July 13th, 2017
Posted In: SEBAC
The 4Cs Contract Negotiations are complete and our union coalition with AFSCME and AFT have reached a Tentative Agreement with the BOR.
This has been a long process that began in December 2015.
The Delegate Assembly met on Saturday to discuss the 4Cs Contract Negotiations and voted to endorse the changes.
ebenson June 29th, 2017
Posted In: Contract Negotiations
Updates on SEBAC 2017 will be posted on the SEBAC 2017 page.
The State Employees Bargaining Agent Coalition (SEBAC) voted this afternoon to open formal discussions with the Malloy administration around a framework that will save jobs and save costs to help address the ongoing revenue shortfalls that have caused Connecticut’s budget deficit.
This framework and potential savings are a clear example of why collective bargaining is so imperative for our state.
Without collective bargaining, the billions of dollars in savings from years of agreed upon state worker concessions would not have been realized. This was an important first step as middle-class workers are doing their part to help solve the budget deficit. Now is the time for legislators to ask the same of the state’s most wealthy and billion dollar corporations.
A final SEBAC agreement will rescind the layoff notices that have been issued since April, provide four years of layoff protection and extend state health care and retiree health care benefits for five years.
Within this framework, the administration must complete all unit negotiations before SEBAC can move forward towards a membership vote.
There are critics who have already come out against this framework because they believe that it does not cause enough pain for working families. These critics would undoubtedly stand against any agreement with SEBAC.
Those individuals need to be reminded of the fact that state employees continue to save the state $1 billion annually through concessions.
We have always been willing to do our part.
What happens next?
- 4Cs leaders will meet to discuss the framework and hold information sessions on the campuses.
- The 4Cs and our coalition partners, AFT and AFSCME, would need to work out a tentative agreement on our 4Cs Contract with the BOR.
- The SEBAC agreement and the 4Cs Contract Agreement will be subject to ratification by the members.
- Once this process is completed, and if all are approved, the SEBAC agreement and all the contracts for the individual bargaining units would be presented to the General Assembly as a single item for approval. The General Assembly can either vote yes on all the agreements or no on all the agreements.
ebenson May 24th, 2017
Posted In: SEBAC
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The Yale University Graduate Students in Unite HERE held a massive action on Monday, May 22, beginning at 8:30am in New Haven.
As you may know, the Yale Graduate Students have formed a union and the Administration is delaying going to the bargaining table.
Unite HERE and the Yale Graduate Students have been supportive of the 4Cs organizing effort at the University of New Haven and in return, we have stopped by a number of their actions, including the May 22 action at Yale graduation.
ebenson May 23rd, 2017
Posted In: Uncategorized