President Lynn Mahoney shares a few brief words with SF State CFA chapter President James Martel after watching their petition unfurl on Nov. 5, 2021. Mahoney didn’t have much to say besides expressing her support of her faculty and telling CFA SF chapter members that, ‘We are on the same page,’ before rushing off. (Amaya Edwards / Golden Gate Xpress) (Amaya Edwards)
President Lynn Mahoney shares a few brief words with SF State CFA chapter President James Martel after watching their petition unfurl on Nov. 5, 2021. Mahoney didn’t have much to say besides expressing her support of her faculty and telling CFA SF chapter members that, ‘We are on the same page,’ before rushing off. (Amaya Edwards / Golden Gate Xpress)

Amaya Edwards

SF State faculty union deliver petition to President Mahoney, demand support in contract negotiations

November 5, 2021

Members of the California Faculty Association San Francisco chapter staged an action today on campus, demanding that SF State President Lynn Mahoney stand by faculty in its contract negotiations with the California State University. 

The petition is calling on Mahoney to stand with SF State’s faculty and demand better proposals from CSU Chancellor Joseph I Castro and Board of Trustees. Members said they feel that their calls for more equitable wages and treatment, among other demands, aren’t being treated with respect and justice. The CFA SF State chapter began their petition campaign during the first weeks of October and gathered over 600 signatures from faculty.

The CFA declared impasse at the end of September, citing an unwillingness from the CSU in addressing the union’s needs for faculty. If the California Public Employment Relations Board finds the declaration to be valid, the process of mediation will follow.

The president of the SF State chapter, James Martel, along with five other CFA members and supporters, waited for Mahoney as she finished teaching a class in the HSS building. Two members held a CFA SF State banner, while another member held the centerpiece of the action: a 24-foot-long print of their letter and signed petition addressed to Mahoney. 

Martel and Mira Foster, SF State librarian and CFA member, roll up the petition letter before taking it to Mahoney’s office on Nov. 5, 2021. The CFA and California State University have reached an impasse in their negotiation process; the impasse stage means that neither side can come to an agreement and so objective, outside mediation is needed. (Amaya Edwards / Golden Gate Xpress) (Amaya Edwards)

Mahoney was caught off guard as she left the HSS building and encountered CFA members waiting for her. As soon as she was spotted, members unfurled the long petition. Mahoney seemed to be in a rush acknowledging the member’s action, but didn’t stay long to engage in a deeper conversation. She claimed to be on the same page and team as the CFA members and faculty but didn’t express more before walking away. 

Actions similar to this one were planned and carried out today statewide across other CSU campuses, asking their presidents as well to stand with faculty and intervene by demanding a better contract from Castro. 

“She can either be on our side or their side, but she can’t be both,” Martel said.  “We would ask her and all the presidents to act on behalf of their faculty — which is their responsibility instead of representing this kind of top down, very corporate hierarchy at the CSU.”

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