Earlier today, the UC Board of Regents approved a pay raise of three percent for eight chancellors in a 10-6 vote at their bimonthly meeting. Some regents voiced disapproval at the raises (which average about $11,000), noting that this comes at a time of high tension with labor unions and that this would further alienate the public.
UC San Diego’s Pradeep Khosla was among the chancellors who received a raise, with his annual salary increasing from $449,208 to $462,684. The other seven chancellors were those at UC San Francisco, UCLA, UC Irvine, UC Santa Barbara, UC Santa Cruz, UC Merced and UC Riverside.
In making their decision, the Regents cited data from the American Chancellors Association showing that eight UC chancellors are paid the same as or less than the tenth percentile of their counterparts in the organization. However, analysis by the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, who gathered outside of Price Center yesterday to protest during one of the Regents’ open sessions, shows that the gross pay for all UC chancellors has risen by 33 percent over the last six years.
During the demonstration, the group held signs with the slogan “Equal Pay! For Equal Work!”, and AFSCME Communications Director John de los Angeles explained to the UCSD Guardian why the protesters were marching.
The AFSCME union represents workers who were hired by UCLA under the UC Fair Wage/Fair Work policy, which guaranteed them a minimum wage of 15 dollars an hour beginning on October 1st, 2017. However, UCLA laid off 84 of these workers at the beginning of this month, all of whom had already undergone nine months of wage theft at the hands of the university, according to Angeles. After the termination, these workers were promised re-assignment but only 30 positions were created, leaving over half of the 84 workers unemployed.
According to the San Francisco Chronicle, AFSCME President Kathryn Lybarger denounced the raises, saying “we shouldn’t be running a public university system in California on the backs of the lowest paid workers.”
Today was the last day of the Regents’ September meeting. The next will be held November 15-16 at UCSF.
Significant additional reporting by Sam Velazquez and Francesca Hummler.