State Bargaining Update

The UAPD will provide regular updates throughout negotiations. Every Wednesday, the bargaining committee has a full day of caucus to discuss strategy and prepare counter proposals followed by bargaining with the state every Thursday. If you have any questions or would like to attend a caucus day, please reach out to your representative.

Friday, August 4, 2023

The UAPD is running a series of radio advertisements denouncing Governor Newsom’s attitude towards civil service doctors vs. contractors. Listen to one of the advertisements here.

Friday, July 14, 2023

Your bargaining team finally met with the State after several cancellations this week. The State advanced a weak on-call proposal and nothing else in the way of economics.

Given that the State legislature begins their summer recess Monday, July 17, the UAPD anticipates more delays or glacial pace movement from the State in the next month until the legislature returns and convenes its session for the rest of the year. In the meantime, UAPD’s expired contract presents an opportunity for our members to engage in a work action.

As contractor physicians continue to enjoy higher salaries and better work conditions than civil service doctors, BU16 members must take a stand and tell this administration that BU16 members will no longer accept its anti-labor sentiment and demand “like pay for like work”! 

On Friday, CCHCS notified us that doctors will no longer get a half-day off following their on-call duties at Richard J. Donovan Correctional Facility. The UAPD will be filing an unfair labor practice charge to fight this retalitatory and anti-union move by management. Due to health and safety concerns, doctors should refuse to take on-call duties in the meantime.

A town hall is being held on Thursday, July 20, at 6 p.m. in preparation of a strike authorization vote. A strike authorization is the first step before going on strike. Unless you believe a 2% wage increase later this year and the same on-call rate without CTO is acceptable, your bargaining team recommends a strike authorization.

In addition to taking a strike vote authorization from members, the UAPD will be sponsoring a flurry of Sacramento radio ads in the upcoming weeks denouncing Governor Newsom’s attitude towards civil service doctors vs. contractors.

Join your team for this important step. Remember, only members will be invited and only members will be able to vote.  If your colleagues aren’t members, let them know their absence from this process is weakening our bargaining position at the table and ask them to join today!

Friday, July 7, 2023

Last week, the State finally advanced a very disappointing economic proposal to the Union. After sitting on the Union’s comprehensive proposal for four months, the State has offered BU16 a 2% general wage increase every year for the next three years. No other changes to wages or benefits have been proposed by the State. The State waited until June 30, the last day before the expiration of our contract, to make this insulting proposal.

As of July 1st, the UAPD contract has expired. Regardless of its expiration, all wages, benefits and terms and conditions of employment will continue. The good news about an expired contract is that BU16 members can now organize and participate in work actions, including a strike. Given that the State has cancelled several bargaining sessions and has lacked preparation at the table, our members should prepare to put pressure on the State to properly respond to our package proposal, which redirects money from contractors to civil service positions.

This week, the State cancelled both bargaining sessions that were scheduled for Wednesday and Thursday. We are scheduled to bargain every Wednesday and Thursday in July. We will continue to update you and provide information about work actions in the coming weeks.

Friday, June 23, 2023

For the past two weeks, the State has paused bargaining. This week’s session was cancelled (again) by the California Department of Human Resources (CalHR) for lack of economic direction. Although the legisature passed a budget last week pursuant constitutional requirements, passage of the budget just guaranteed paychecks for themselves. Meanwhile, State workers, including BU16, frustratingly wait for the State to respond to our salary and benefits proposals. Our fight for a fair contract is just beginning. We have to prepare ourselves for collective actions once our contract expires.


The UAPD grievance regarding violation of work hours has been denied by the CCHCS.

Please read a summary of the CCHCS grievance denial here. The UAPD will be elevating this grievance to CalHR. We are requesting members share and discuss this grievance and summary with colleagues. To properly appeal this denial, the UAPD must collect factual evidence of CCHCS members who are regularly working more than 40 hours per week. The only way to accomplish this is through the Electronic 998-A Timesheet. We ask that members enter the actual number of hours worked each day on their 998-A Timesheet. If your timesheet is denied because it reflects hours beyond 40 hours per week, please remind your supervisor of the note requirement that must be submitted with every timesheet: “I certify that I have reviewed and verified that the attached CDCR 998-A is correct.”

Then ask them to put it in writing that you are required to submit an “incorrect” timesheet, which does not reflect your true hours.

We will set up a *Statewide Workgroup to discuss the grievance response and gather examples to present at a grievance conference with CalHR.

*We are asking that at least one Physician from each facility contact Nereyda Rivera at nrivera@uapd.com to participate in the Statewide Workgroup.

Collective power is the only way we can push back against abuse from management.

Friday, June 16, 2023

This week’s bargaining session was cancelled by the State for lack of economic direction from HR. It was expected given the legislature’s vote on the budget occuring Thursday, 6/15, which now goes to the Governor for approval. Despite not having a bargaining session, your committee caucused for two days over several issues occurring throughout the State. Below are the issues and actions discussed:

Average Weekly Hours Worked
Due to high vacancy rates and added duties, such as MAT, the average hours of work per week for most physicians is over 40 hours-violating our MOU. Although there’s a proposal on the table to assure doctors’ workloads are manageable within 40 hours per week, the UAPD will need to survey our members to collect data on how many hours our members are working weekly. We will send out a survey to collect this data.

Peer Review Used as a Weapon Against Our Members
It has been reported that some of our members have participated in peer review only to find out the process is being weaponized against them. Of particular concern is that most peer reviews are heavy with management participation, turning the process into an “investigatory meeting,” which would transform the process into one that’s protected under the Dill’s Act. In those cases, our members have the right to have a union representative present during the peer review to assure their rights are preserved under the law. Peer review sessions have also been used to threaten physicians with an 805 report to the Medical Board, in many instances forcing the doctor to resign instead of being reported. This is a gross violation of our members’ civil services rights.

Your bargaining committee is working on a Peer Review recommendation for our members. We will send this as soon as it is completed.

Class Action Grievance – CCHCS
The UAPD has filed a class action grievance on behalf of Physicians & Surgeons at the California Correctional Health Care Services (CCHCS).

In January 2023, the UAPD met with Dr. Joseph Bick, Director of Health Services, and Dr. Diana Toche, DDS, Undersecretary to review the Physician survey results and our serious concerns. They clearly understood physician concerns. The Receiver, Clark Kelso, and his administration have failed to address physician concerns.

If you have additional concerns that are not addressed by the class action, please reach out to your union representative to discuss local issues.

Friday, June 2, 2023

The State had very few counter proposals and no economic proposals for the UAPD.  

Given the Governor’s May revised budget, it’s anticipated the legislator will not have a finalized budget by the conditional deadline of June 15. In past years, unions were under pressure to reach an agreement by June 15. This round of bargaining has been much slower and the State has delayed all economic proposals. Bargaining is expected to go beyond July 1.

In light of this and the tough economic proposals submitted by the UAPD, we urge our members to prepare for work actions that will demonstrate to lawmakers we are serious about parity with contractors.

Reach out to your colleagues and implore them to become union members at this critical time. The Union is only as strong as its members.

Friday, May 26, 2023

The State has not responded to our economic proposals asking for significant wage increases for all of our bargaining unit members. The State did have a presentation from the CDCR recruiter. The presentation was nearly identical to one presented three years ago during bargaining. In 2023, CDCR hired 18 psychiatrists. This figure barely makes a difference in the department’s vacancy rate of more than 40%. The recruiter was unable to provide data on the turnover rate for newly hired physicians.

The CCHCS recruiter emphasized a 40-hour week offering work-life balance. The bargaining team noted this as false advertising. Since the Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT) program was implemented, office visits have tripled and the administration has not hired additional staff to handle the workload. As a result, physicians are working 50 to 60-hour workweeks.

In addition, the UAPD and CDCR psychiatrists continue to request more funding for the recruitment and retention of psychiatrists from members of the legislature and the Secretary of Corrections. Next week, there will be more meetings discussing CDCR psychiatry.

Friday, May 19, 2023

Bargaining committee members and members at large met with Assemblymember Dr. Joaquin Arambula, Chair of the Assembly Budget Subcommittee No. 1 on Health and Human Services. The UAPD asked for Arambula’s support in filling vacancies with civil service doctors and reversing the trend of employing contractors that has grown over the last decade. In years of budget deficits, replacing contractors with employee doctors saves the State and California taxpayers half a billion dollars.

The team also met with members at Patton State Hospital via Zoom during our lunch caucus on Thursday, 5/18.  Although turnout was low, the team expressed their appreciation for those who took the time to attend. Committee members also strongly encouraged the doctors to reach out to their colleagues to participate.

Dr. Peter Dang, DPM, Metropolitan State Hospital said, “The bargaining process is a time of excitement and opportunity to change their work environment. This is a time for all of the doctors to come together and show their strength as a Union! This is the time to be present.”

Dr. Lazarus Chanza, DDS, California Rehabilitation Center, perfectly summarized the message stating, “United we stand, divided we fall.”

Negotiations with the State only accomplished a handful of rollover agreements (no change to current language in MOU) and a few counter proposals.  When asked to provide a estimate of when the Union can expect a response to our salary proposals, the State responded, “We are working through our parameters with folks we need to work through our parameters with.” 

Given that statement, the Union doesn’t expect a response in the next week.

Friday, May 12, 2023

The bargaining committee signed off on more rollover language that will not change for the term of the contract. Proposals about office space license renewal fees, voluntary transfers, and telecommuting were also passed. The team worked with several at-large members who made presentations to the team during caucus days. The Union’s proposal guarantees the right to telecommute for members whose work can be performed remotely.

The State responded to the Union’s proposal giving stewards the right to use State emails and computers for Union communications and updates.

The Governor’s May revised budget was published today, citing a $31.5 billion deficit, the Union expects the State to respond to our economic proposals next week.  

Friday, May 5, 2023

Bargaining with the state was called off on Thursday, 5/4, because the State did not release the team for our caucus the day before. The State informed UAPD that it didn’t think the Union should caucus given that the Governor will not publish the May revised budget until after mid-May. UAPD immediately threatened an Unfair Labor Practice charge against the State for surface bargaining and bargaining in bad faith. The State then conceded to allow our team to caucus on Thursday and resume bargaining next week while preserving our regular caucuses on Wednesday until the end of June.

On Thursday, 5/4, the bargaining committee met with doctors from the Department of Social Services who presented their telework proposal. The meeting was very productive and the committee will revise its proposal to reflect a clearer telework proposal, which will balance recruitment and retention with operational needs—not management bias.

During the team caucus next week, DSH physicians and surgeons will present their telework proposal for consideration.

Friday, April 28, 2023

The bargaining committee caucused all day on Wednesday, 04/26, to strategize and respond to proposals in preparation for bargaining on Thursday, 04/27. Moving forward, the team will caucus every Wednesday and bargain with the State every Thursday until the end of June or until an agreement is reached.

Several “rollover” proposals were signed off by the Union in order to maintain the current contract language in sections that do not need to be updated or changed. By doing this, it focuses attention on substantive issues, such as wages and benefits.

The Union also passed several counter proposals in response to the State’s proposals from last week. Most of these proposals have to do with the Union’s right to represent BU 16 more effectively and strengthen the role of our stewards.

The State indicated they will not present any economic proposals until the Governor finalizes the May budget revise in mid-May.

Next week, the Union will present its Telework proposal. Several members will be invited to join the working caucus on Wednesday to formulate the proposal.

Friday, April 21, 2023

The BU16 bargaining committee met with the state on Thursday, 04/20. The State rejected several of our proposals. Among them:

  • Stewards Rights (release time in whole-day increments)
  • State’s Rights (any rule or policy change should apply evenly among all BU16 members)
  • Meal Periods (arduous meal should be paid automatically instead of having to apply for it)
  • Shift Changes (any changes to shift should not increase doctors workload)
  • Additional Appointments (additional appointments shall be automatic to any volunteers)
  • Progressive Discipline (clinical reviews and administrative inquiries shall be subject to arbitration)
  • Professional Judgment (issues of professional judgment shall be subject to arbitration)
  • Out of Class Assignments (guarantees at least 5% above current salary)
  • Voluntary Transfers (guarantees an expeditious transfer and favors employed doctors over contractors)

The State also proposed eliminating payment of the DEA fee. This is a take-away. Other than the DEA fee proposal, no economic proposals were presented by the State.

This process is very important for all of us. The committee knows that salary increases are at the center of these discussions but we cannot lose sight of the overall impact each one of these issues has on your colleagues who work in other departments. The employer’s goal is to divide and isolate our members so that they cannot present a collective voice in this process.

“Every issue is important. Doctor support of each issue builds power. A united voice brings change.”

Thursday, April 6, 2023

The bargaining committee had its first bargaining session with the state of California. The committee spoke out strongly and advocated on our members’ behalf.

The UAPD’s sunshine package proposal submitted on March 9, 2023, was reviewed by the State’s negotiating team. The State inquired about our intent for each proposed adjustment. A considerable amount of time was spent deliberating on our proposal to include a “Dignity Clause.”

The financial measures in the package, such as salaries and on-call, received minimal attention. Proposals related to money were postponed by the State until later in the negotiation process.

No proposals or counter proposals were passed in this session. The State will wait until the next meeting on Thursday, April 20, 2023, to respond to or submit individual proposals.

Wednesday, March 8, 2023

The proposal for upcoming negotiations has been submitted by the bargaining committee. The proposal is now available to the public for review. We encourage you to read it here and make comments on the sunshine package proposal by Wednesday, March 16.

The package proposal includes the following:

  • Hourly Rates comparable to contractor hourly rates
  • Hour for hour on-call rate (now in MOD section)
  • Increased vacation and annual leave accruals

Please email your comments to: Lr.info@calhr.ca.gov with the Subject Line: BU16 Sunshine.

Monday, March 6, 2023

The UAPD bargaining committee is preparing to negotiate a successor agreement to the expiring contract. The team is submitting a complete proposal package the morning of Thursday, March 9, 2023 at 10 a.m. The union’s proposal will be made public for comment for seven days. After which, we will begin to bargain directly with the state.

The union is proposing an aggressive package to save the state money by asking for pay parity and supplanting contractors with state-employed doctors.

A huge part of bargaining a fair contract relies on our membership. It shows that our voices are backed up by the power of our members.