Cal State employees authorize strike if talks fail

LOS ANGELES (AP) – California State University employees have overwhelmingly voted to authorize a series of two-day strikes if a new contract cannot be reached. Lillian Taiz, president of the California Faculty Association, which represents 24,000 professors, librarians, coaches and counselors in the 23-campus system, said Wednesday nearly 95 percent of members voted in favor of the strike authorization. The union has proposed “rolling” strikes in which groups of campuses would go out on strike for two days each, one group following another. University spokesman Michael Uhlenkamp says talk of a strike is premature as bargaining is ongoing with talks scheduled for Thursday and Friday. The 400,000-student system is dealing with a $970 million loss in state funding since 2008, raising tuition and slashing staff as a result.

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