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Sunday, December 6, 1998
Brad Hayward (510) 987-9195


Based on a proposal initiated by state Senate President Pro Tem John Burton and Assembly Speaker Antonio Villaraigosa, the University of California and the UAW have agreed to a 45-day cooling-off period in the current labor dispute involving teaching assistants, readers and tutors.

During this period, the parties have agreed to meet to discuss the concerns of both sides in an attempt to resolve the issues that led to the strike.

The strike, called over the issue of recognition for graduate teaching assistants, will be recessed during the cooling-off period, and striking TAs will return to work Monday, December 7, to complete the fall term. Talks will begin within 10 days.

"While we continue to believe that teaching assistants are not eligible for collective bargaining, we welcome the opportunity to sit down and have an open exchange of ideas about issues related to the strike," said UC

President Richard C. Atkinson. "We believe that a frank dialogue about the concerns expressed by both sides is the best way to proceed."

Atkinson added that the university will continue to pursue conversations with members of the university community and other interested parties in order to gain widespread input on the issues involved.

The president thanked Burton and Villaraigosa for their efforts in establishing the cooling-off period and the talks, which the university and the UAW both hope will lay a foundation for their future relationship.

"We appreciate the overture made by Senator Burton and Speaker Villaraigosa," Atkinson said. "Our first priority has been to fulfill our obligations to undergraduate students, and this plan will ensure that instruction and grading of final exams for the fall term proceed without interruption."

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Brad Hayward
Senior Public Information Representative
University of California Office of the President
1111 Franklin Street, 12th Floor
Oakland, California 94607-5200
(510) 987-9195