The Latest: Senator boycotts speech due to UC labor dispute
LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Latest on a strike by thousands of University of California workers (all times local):
U.S. Senator Kamala Harris is heeding a boycott call by striking University of California employees and won’t be commencement speaker at UC Berkeley ceremonies.
Harris announced Monday that she “regretfully” won’t attend Saturday’s spring commencement due to the labor dispute and the call for a university-wide speaker boycott.
Instead, UC Berkeley Chancellor Carol Christ will deliver the keynote address.
Harris says she wishes the estimated 5,800 students “success for the future.”
Thousands of UC custodians, security guards, gardeners and other service workers began a three-day walkout on Monday to address gender pay inequalities and demand higher wages.
Thousands of custodians, security guards, gardeners and other service workers at University of California campuses have started a three-day walkout to address gender pay inequalities and demand higher wages.
Strikers gathered at sunrise Monday on the 10 campuses throughout the state, wearing green t-shirts and carrying signs that call for “equality, fairness, respect.”
The strike was called by AFSCME Local 3299, which represents 25,000 service workers, after the union and the university couldn’t agree on a new contract and mediation efforts failed.
The service workers called for a sympathy strike by professional and technical employees that could potentially include medical assistants, nurses, radiology and other technicians.
Medical center officials said they would continue to deliver essential patient care services but last week rescheduled a variety of appointments in anticipation of the walkouts.