Service workers at University of California campuses across the state are planning to strike early Monday morning over alleged wage inequality. Workers are demanding increases in pay, affordable health care and job security.
Among the thousands expected on picket lines are UC custodians, food service workers, security guards and parking attendants. Nurses and other patient care staff from UC hospitals are set to begin sympathy strikes on Tuesday.
Todd Stenhouse, a spokesman for ASFCME Local 3299, the union that represents UC service workers, says the system's low-wage workers can't keep up with the state's rising cost of living.
"You have these $35,000, $40,000-a-year career custodians do the most physically demanding jobs at UC, [and] UC wants to pay even less," Stenhouse said.
This is happening, he says, while University of California executives continue to make more money. ASFCME released a report last month that found that the pay disparity between the highest-paid UC employees and the median worker grew between 2005 and 2015, and that top administrator salaries went up 64 percent during the same period.