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Union Leaders Urge L.A. Teachers to Vote for Strike

May 25, 1987|From Associated Press

Union leaders Sunday urged rank-and-file members of United Teachers Los Angeles to vote a strike for June 1 unless a contract with a higher wage increase than the one proposed by the school district is agreed to.

The union's 350-member House of Representatives, meeting at Hamilton High School, voted unanimously to ask teachers to authorize a strike, said Cathy Carey, director of communications for UTLA.

The union's 45-member board of directors voted to authorize a strike vote Saturday.

The 21,000 teachers who are members of the union will vote Tuesday at their schools, and votes will be counted Wednesday, she said.

The teachers are asking for a 14% wage increase, while the Los Angeles Unified School District has offered an 8% raise.

The school district should be able to afford the raise because of funds available and new funds alloted by Gov. George Deukmejian's revised education budget, Carey said.

"We want our piece of the pie. We will obviously be willing to talk about compromise at the bargaining table," she said. "We're hoping that the district will feel the same."

A neutral fact-finding report issued Saturday supported the school district's position that it cannot afford the raise demanded by teachers.

The panel, like the district, proposed an 8% raise, as well as an alternative two-year settlement providing a 10% raise this year and next if state financing is available.

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