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Our leverage will decide

What does it take to call a strike

Granting strike authorization does not mean workers are automatically going out on strike. It does give the negotiations teams the power to call a strike.

Strike authorization steps

  • Members must reject the latest contract offer.

  • Each Bargaining Unit Council (Prof and Tech Council Reps) must separately vote to give the Negotiation Team strike authorization on the ballot.

  • Strike authorization goes to a vote by all members in the bargaining units.

  • If at least 50% plus one vote for strike authorization, the SPEEA negotiation teams have the authority to call a strike if needed.

by Rick Hoffman
SPEEA Negotiation Team

When members vote on the next contract offer, the SPEEA Negotiation Team will no doubt also call for a vote on strike authorization. Your vote on strike authorization will impact the type of contract we achieve, whether it is fair or one that takes away.

Our unity, demonstrated by our overwhelming rejection of their grossly unfair and disrespectful first offer, made them reconsider their stance. Unfortunately, their proposed changes so far have been woefully inadequate and will result in losses to many of our members over the years of the contract.

If we once again reject the offer, then we have to vote YES on strike authorization if we are going to have any meaningful influence when we go back to the bargaining table after the vote.

The negotiating team is in no hurry to call a strike, so we will try again and again to get a fair deal, but we will need leverage at the table.

How strongly we move corporate toward agreeing to a contract that respects us will be defined by the strength of our vote to authorize a strike.

If we are strong enough and if our voice is loud enough, we will avoid a strike by demonstrating our unity. I, and the other members of the negotiating team, have no desire to walk a picket line again, but we will. By standing together, we can avoid lighting the burn barrels again, but we are making the preparations to do so if we have to.