Peralta Community College District's Only Student-Run Publication
Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

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    A glimmer of hope for part-time faculty

    Governor Jerry Brown signed two bills into law Sept. 30 that will bring a measure of job security to part-time faculty at California’s community colleges. 
    The bills are AB 1690, carried by former part-time instructor Jose Medina (D-Riverside) and SB 1379, carried by former teacher Tony Mendoza (D-Artesia). 
    Under California law such part-time college faculty are counted as temporary employees and could be hired or fired at will. The new law establishes minimum standards for reemployment preference, based on four criteria:
     — Length of time taught at the college or district
     — Number of courses taught there
     — Professional evaluations
     — “Availability, willingness, and expertise” to teach specific classes or accept specific assignments.
    These rights are also known as “rehire rights” or “right of first refusal.”
    The law will require districts seeking state Student Success and Support Program funds to comply with the new standards. It will go into effect Jan. 1, 2017 for those schools with a collective bargaining agreement already in place. 
    Schools without such an agreement must begin good-faith collective bargaining by July 1, 2017. 
    Part-time faculty members at California’s community colleges have been campaigning for a long time for more job security. Part-time Peralta Faculty Representative Cynthia Mahabir has been immersed in that campaign. 
    She expressed relief that the law is finally on the books and gratitude for all the help from other Peralta faculty, both part-time and full-time, who wrote letters and made phone calls in support of the bills. 
    Other unions lent their assistance as well, including the California Federation of Teachers (CFT), California Teachers Association (CTA), United Professional and Technical Employees (UPTE) and the California Community College Independents (CCCI).
    Two advocacy associations, the Faculty Association of California Community Colleges (FACCC) and the California Part-Time Faculty Association (CPFA) also helped out.
    It took two years to get the bills through the legislature and all the way to the governor’s desk for his signature. The first time around the bill died in the appropriations committee when the California Community Leaders, a business and lobbying organization, intervened due to concerns about tax increases. 
    The final bill was watered down from its original form.
    “Still,” Mahabir said, “it’s a good floor to negotiate working conditions.”

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    About the Contributor
    In the fall of 2019, The Laney Tower rebranded as The Citizen and launched a new website. These stories were ported over from the old Laney Tower website, but byline metadata was lost in the port. However, many of these stories credit the authors in the text of the story. Some articles may also suffer from formatting issues. Future archival efforts may fix these issues.  
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