Pasadena Unified, Teachers Union at Impasse Over Future Salary Increases, Seek Mediator

Published : Tuesday, May 21, 2019 | 5:19 AM

Pasadena Unified School District Supervisor Dr. Brian McDonald told District employees late last week that negotiations between Pasadena Unified and the United Teachers of Pasadena over salary raises are at an impasse and a mediator has been requested to help resolve differences.

McDonald said negotiations were making progress until last week when, he said, the Union “continued to insist” on a 3 percent salary increase in the 2020-21 and 2021-22 school years which McDonald said would put the school district in jeopardy.

Neither United Teachers of Pasadena President Alvin Nash nor President-elect Allison Steppes responded to multiple requests from Pasadena Now for information about the Union’s position.

McDonald said that in recent negotiations Pasadena Unified had agreed to salary increases over three years that would have given certificated staff a 2 percent one-time bonus for the 2018-19 school year and an ongoing 3 percent salary increase in the 2019-20 school year.

The District and UTP had also reached agreement on increases to dental benefits, he said.

But the Union also maintained its position requiring continued 3 percent raises in future years and given the District’s financial condition, McDonald said, the result would be “devastating cuts” to school programs.

“Since talks have not progressed, the union and the district have mutually recommended that we are at impasse,” McDonald reported.“What this means is that we would seek an impartial mediator to work with both sides in reaching a possible agreement. Impasse provides a path forward for both sides to discuss their positions for reaching an agreement.”

McDonald said the District remains engaged in the process in good faith and is “optimistic” a mutually acceptable labor agreement can be reached which benefits “employees, students, and schools.”

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