Any time workers are treated unfairly or denied just pay for providing agreed-upon services, they have a right to seek better working conditions. In many situations, California employees may find themselves in the midst of an employment contract dispute that requires them to go on strike or take other measures to get their point across. As long as the laws are followed, these actions can be an effective bargaining tool, though there are times when workers may need to pursue other avenues for relief.
In order for most children in public school to be successful, there needs to be talented teachers who inspire a love for learning in their students. When a contract dispute jeopardizes the financial stability of those teachers, in many ways, the entire community may pay the price. Recently, parents and other taxpayers turned out in a show of support for teachers in their local school district. These educational providers went out on strike to protest the school board's reluctance to agree to an increase in their salaries.
According to several speakers at a recent meeting, the teachers in this particular district are significantly underpaid in comparison to neighboring districts. A petition signed by approximately 150 parents reportedly indicated their willingness to pay increased property taxes in order to provide their teachers with a salary more comparable to what their peers are earning. The school board declined to comment publicly concerning the matter but did later state that the board is willing to hold further negotiations and that it felt that progress was being made.
Teachers have stated that they wish to remain at their school, but the lower salaries are making that a difficult choice. They further claimed that the board's history of allowing contracts to expire and for teachers to work for a year without a contract or pay increase is not an acceptable alternative this year. The teachers are under orders to return to work by the middle of November regardless of whether the employment contract dispute has been resolved. California workers who find that they are unable to reach a satisfactory conclusion for their own dispute are entitled to seek the guidance of an employment law professional.
Source: heraldstandard.com, "Residents show support for striking teachers at Ringgold school board meeting", Mark Soroka, Oct. 26, 2017