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LA schools may close as thousands of teachers, workers begin strike

60,000 LAUSD employees set to strike as labor talks stall

60,000 LAUSD employees set to strike as labor talks stall


Tens of thousands of workers in the Los Angeles Unified School District will strike for three days next week in stalled contract negotiations, and teachers will join them, potentially shutting down the nation’s second-largest school system, union leaders announced Wednesday.

Unless an agreement is reached, the strike was scheduled to begin on Tuesday, March 21. The announcement was made at a meeting of the Service Employees International Union, which represents about 30,000 teachers’ aides, bus drivers, custodians, cafeteria workers and other support workers.

United Teachers Los Angeles, the union representing 35,000 teachers, counselors and other workers, expressed solidarity.

LA schools may be closed for 3 days as thousands of teachers, employees begin strike

A rally held in Grand Park on March 15, 2023 by United Teachers of Los Angeles and SEIU 99 members in Los Angeles, California.

Los Angeles Times via Francine Orr/Getty Images

“Teachers will join our union siblings on the picket line,” a UTLA tweet said.

The teachers A six-day strike Schools remained open in 2019 over pay and contract issues.

During this time, schools will likely be closed and there will be no access to virtual learning, Superintendent Alberto M. Carvalho said in an email to parents on Monday.

“We will have no way of ensuring a safe and secure environment in which to teach,” Carvalho said.

Carvalho also accused the union of refusing to negotiate.

“Let’s go to the table,” Carvalho said at a press conference on Wednesday. “Let’s stay at the table. Whenever, wherever, until there’s a solution.”

The district has over 500,000 students. It serves all or part of Los Angeles and 25 other cities and unincorporated counties.

SEIU members have been working without a contract since June 2020, and the teachers’ contract expires in June 2022. Unions decided last week to stop accepting contract extensions

SEIU said district support workers earn an average of about $25,000 per year, and many live in poverty as LA County struggles with inflation and high housing costs.

SEUI is seeking a 30% wage hike for its workers across the board, According to According to CBS Los Angeles, LAUSD has offered a 10% raise, with another 9% to be delivered over time.

“Despite LAUSD having one of the largest school budgets and the largest reserves in the nation, teachers and essential school staff struggle to support their own families and live in the communities they serve,” UTLA President Cecile Mayert-Cruz said in a statement Wednesday. . . “To add insult to injury, the district chose to violate their legal rights as workers, resulting in an unfair labor practice strike.”

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