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State Scientists’ Union to Rally for Fair Pay at Democratic Convention in Sacramento

Saturday’s event will follow a historic three-day strike to pressure Gov. Newsom to value state scientists

Saturday’s rally in Sacramento is another step toward achieving equitable pay for state scientists. We will not be ignored.”
— CAPS President Jacqueline Tkac
SACRAMENTO, CA, UNITED STATES, November 17, 2023 /EINPresswire.com/ -- The California Association of Professional Scientists (CAPS) will stage a rally during the California Democratic Party’s State Endorsing Convention this weekend to demand Gov. Gavin Newsom bargain a fair contract with wages that appropriately value the union’s members and their vital public service.

CAPS anticipates at least a thousand members and supporters will attend the Saturday event, rain or shine, from noon to 1:30 p.m. at the Safe Credit Union Convention Center. The rally builds on a historic three-day statewide “Defiance for Science” strike. The walkout marked the first time in the four decades of state employee collective bargaining that one of their unions has gone on strike.

“Our members’ trailblazing action this week is not an end,” said CAPS President Jacqueline Tkac, who also chairs the union’s bargaining team. “It is a start. And Saturday’s rally in Sacramento is another step toward achieving equitable pay for state scientists. We will not be ignored.”

Despite their important work, state scientists’ pay for nearly 20 years has lagged the salaries paid to counterparts in similar state, local, and federal positions by 30% or more. Their wages have also fallen behind those of their supervisors and managers by a similar percentage. CAPS has been bargaining to close the gap for all that time, including the 39 months since its last Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) expired in mid-2020. (State law and the terms of the previous contract kept the expired agreement’s terms in place until the parties reached impasse in September.)

The two sides met with the mediator on Nov. 8. After gauging the administration’s position, CAPS informed the state its members would strike for three days starting Nov. 15 to send a clear signal to the administration that it must come to the next mediation session on Nov. 28 ready to move toward contract terms that value state scientists. The administration filed an Unfair Practice Claim (UPC) against CAPS to stop the union from striking. PERB has not yet ruled on the matter. CAPS proceeded with its legal job action as planned.

The CalEPA Building in Downtown Sacramento was the strike’s epicenter, drawing more than 1,000 pickets each of the Defiance for Science’s three days. Hundreds more CAPS members picketed their workplaces statewide on Thursday and Friday.


What:
CAPS Rally at the California Democratic Party Fall Endorsing Convention

When:
Saturday, Nov. 18, noon to 1:30 p.m.

Where:
Safe Credit Union Convention Center, 1401 K St., Sacramento

Why:
The union will demand Gov. Newsom bargain a contract that values state scientists

Available interviews:
CAPS members and President/Bargaining Chair Jacqueline Tkac

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ABOUT CAPS
CAPS represents roughly 5,600 state-employed scientists (including 4,300 rank and file and 1,300 supervisors and managers) working in over 30 state departments in 81 scientific classifications. CAPS members protect Californians from life-threatening diseases; safeguard our wildlife and abundant natural resources; and protect our food supply, air and water from toxic waste and pollution. Follow on X.com and Instagram: @capsscientists.



Jon Ortiz
California Association of Professional Scientists
+1 9167618267
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