Education Beat Podcast — How a school lunch lady sparked better trauma response for schools — Listen Now!

News Update

Labor board upholds L.A. Unified union’s right to strike – for now

The state Public Employee Labor Relations Board on Sunday denied Los Angeles Unified’s request to stop a planned three-day strike by its service employees’ union, although the district said the board would further review the matter today, the Los Angeles Times reported.

The strike, scheduled to begin Tuesday, is being organized by Local 99 of Service Employees International Union. The union represents almost 30,000 custodians, special education aides and other workers. The teachers union has encouraged its 30,000 members to participate in the strike, as well.

In its request to the labor board, the district claimed that the union gave a false reason for striking when it said it was protesting unfair labor practices. The district contends that the union is using the strike as a bargaining tool for higher salaries.

Local 99 Executive Director Max Arias said the board’s decision “confirms that workers have a right to protest over the threats and harassment waged against them by the school district,” the Times reported. “They will continue to move forward with plans to strike this week. Their voices will not be silenced.”

The district said the issue remains unresolved.

“The PERB Board has directed their Office of General Counsel to expedite the processing of the district’s underlying unfair practice charge against SEIU Local 99, which alleged that SEIU and its members are engaging in an unlawful 3-day strike,” district officials said. “Contrary to SEIU’s assertions, the PERB OGC has not made a decision on Los Angeles Unified’s unfair practice charge regarding the alleged illegality of SEIU’s strike, and the District expects a decision from the PERB OGC as soon as Monday morning given the expedited processing direction from the PERB Board.”