As you may have heard, the faculty and staff at Community College of Philadelphia are on strike. College President Stephen Curtis posted a statement on their web site explaining the administrative position. After reading a few articles about the union conflicts, I’m inclined to agree with him.
To be completely honest, we are at a little bit of a loss to understand why the union leadership has authorized a strike this evening. The facts are that our final and best offer, which we put forward earlier today and which was rejected a short while ago, continues to provide free health care for all of our employees and their families (that is, it requires no employee contributions toward premiums) and a salary increase that averages 3.62 percent annually for the life of the five-year contract.
A guaranteed annual 3.62% raise over five years and free healthcare? Free?! That’s unheard of in most industries, as are pensions. CCP employees contribute 5% and the employer 10% to their pension plan. This all sounds quite cushy to me.
No matter how much reading I do I can’t seem to find a clear statement from the union about what they want aside from a contract. Can anyone shed some light on this?