UC Custodians Win Raises

By Judith Scherr
Friday May 25, 2007

UC Berkeley custodians have won their equity raises, the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Local 3299 announced in a press release Tuesday. 

In part, it took high profile personalities such as actor Danny Glover and presidential hopeful Barack Obama refusing to speak at UC Berkeley and State Sen. John Burton’s mediation to win the wage hikes. 

The settlement includes an immediate initial wage increase of $1.25 per hour for UC Berkeley custodians ,and will be increased an additional $.50 per hour in October.  

“This has been an important struggle for those of us who work very hard every day to make the university work,” said Maricruz Manzanarez, a UC Berkeley custodian, quoted in the AFSCME press statement. “To finally receive public recognition from the university that they must address their system of substandard wages validates the time and effort that we put into this fight.” 

As part of the agreement, UC Santa Barbara and Santa Cruz custodians will get the same wage increases as UC Berkeley and the university will end its practice of outsourcing groundskeepers at UC Irvine.