Big wage gains at UOP

The University of the Pacific’s August move-in weekend for the 2022-23 school year saw a throng of students, parents, and university staff. Amid the shuffling of boxes and retrieving of room keys, sheets of neon green paper were handed out to students by Pacific’s Physical Plant workers. The flier explained that a strike was imminent unless Pacific signed a contract with Teamsters Local 439 giving the workers higher pay.

According to Principal Officer Sal Lomeli, the members were primarily seeking pay raises. After several bargaining sessions, an agreement was reached in September and ratified by 92% of the unit, thus averting a strike.

Ultimately, the contract increased the starting wage for janitorial and grounds staff from $16 to $18.50/hour, and increased painters’ salaries from $32 to $40/hour, while giving all employees with 10 years of seniority an additional $1/hour increase.