UC Academic Employees Call Strike at UCLA and UC Davis Over Protest Response


The labor union representing thousands of academic employees in the University of California system has called for a strike at UCLA and UC Davis.

UAW 4811 is urging members at these two universities to “walk off the job” on Tuesday, May 28, following similar actions by UC Santa Cruz workers over university responses to pro-Palestinian protests on campus.

The strike announcement coincided with UCLA Chancellor Gene Block’s testimony before the House Education and Workforce Committee regarding campus antisemitism and his handling of protests and encampments.

According to the union, a part of the United Auto Workers, the school administration “mishandled and escalated the situation by taking unlawful actions that cut to the heart of our collective bargaining agreements.” They claim that free speech rights were infringed upon and took issue with the arrest of some union members connected to the protests.

UAW 4811 represents nearly 50,000 graduate students across the UC system’s 10 campuses, working as researchers, teaching assistants, and tutors.

University officials sought to halt the walkout on Thursday, filing a formal injunction with the California Public Employment Relations Board. That request was denied. However, the CPERB noted that the union did not “provide adequate advance notice of its work stoppage.”

In late April, the encampment at UCLA turned violent when counter-protesters allegedly began to forcefully dismantle it, leading to hours of clashes before police intervened.

Law enforcement arrested around 200 people and dismantled the encampment. During his testimony, Block acknowledged that the police should have responded more quickly. Earlier this week, UCLA police chief John Thomas was temporarily reassigned amid criticism of the slow response.

Pro-Palestinian protesters returned to the site on Thursday, only to be met by a heavy police presence in riot gear and a statement from the university warning that failure to disperse would result in arrest, possible disciplinary action, and a seven-day campus ban.

Breccan F. Thies
Breccan F. Thies
Investigative Reporter. He previously covered education and culture issues at Breitbart News. A Virginia native, Thies graduated from the University of Virginia in 2019, where he earned a degree in foreign affairs and minored in history.

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