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LA Unified files last-ditch legal challenge to stop looming strike and school closures

Howard Blume, Los Angeles Times on

Published in News & Features

The L.A. Unified filing also notes that the state labor board “has held that strikes or other work stoppages before completion” of the negotiating process “violates the union’s duty to negotiate in good faith, and/or to participate in good faith in the impasse resolution process.”

Local 99 had not had an opportunity to review the filing for the injunction and did not provide an immediate response early Friday evening.

A settlement that would prevent the strike appeared unlikely Friday as no negotiations took place between L.A. Unified officials and Local 99.

The teachers union bargained with the district on Friday, but a settlement in these negotiations also appeared unlikely. And, even a settlement with UTLA would not prevent Local 99 members from walking out.

Local 99 last held a bargaining session with the district on March 1. L.A. schools Supt. Alberto Carvalho said this week that he and his team are ready to meeting with Local 99 “around the clock” to prevent a strike.

He urged the union not to undertake a step that would further harm students already struggling to recover academically and emotionally from the COVID-19 pandemic.


Union officials suggest the effort was insincere and too little, too late.

“More than half of SEIU Local 99 members are also parents of school-aged children, many of them students at LAUSD,” spokeswoman Blanca Gallegos said Friday. “We are keenly aware of the impact that a strike will have on our families. LAUSD has pushed workers to take this step because of their continued disrespect of workers who are simply seeking to improve their livelihoods and the student services they provide.”

She added: “SEIU Local 99 also continues to follow the legal mediation process with the state. If LAUSD wants to break the impasse process, they must meet workers’ demands for a living wage, increased hours, more staffing and respect on the job.”

The union is seeking an across-the-board 30% increase plus an additional $2 per hour for the lowest paid workers.


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