Hola a todos. The union representing the employees of the University of California (UC) system called a pre-scheduled 3-day strike this past week (the week of el 7 de mayo de 2018/7 May 2018).
Unlike the other campuses in the statewide 10-campus UC system, UCSF Medical Center (UC San Francisco) is a health sciences University with professional schools in dentistry, medicine, nursing and pharmacy. UCSF has multiple campuses throughout San Francisco, including UCSF at Mt Zion, at Mission Bay and the UCSF Medical Center at San Francisco General Hospital.
UCSF Medical Center is the top-rated medical center in the State of California, rated “Best in the West” and it’s ranked #5 in the US for medical research and #2 in the US for Primary Care.
During the strike, I was on the Parnassus Height campus, the main campus in the UCSF system. (No, I did not cross their picket line. I supported the employees and their strike.)
I read that in order to honour the strike, thousands of medical appointments were cancelled by patients and hundreds of surgeries had been cancelled.
UCSF has an elaborate colour-coded shuttle system for transporting UCSF staff (including MDs, nurses, anesthesiologists, and other medical personnel as well as some able-bodied patients) to and from their other campuses in The City from early morning until late in the evening. During the 3-day strike, their fleet of shuttles was not running.
I saw a scab driving one of the Blue line shuttles and (what looked like) another scab running one of the Grey line shuttles.
I also saw a UCSF VA shuttle (Veteran’s Administration) but I think that was required to run because the doctors/resident physicians who work at the VA Medical Center in San Francisco come from UCSF at Parnassus Heights.
I’ve read the requirements for working as a UCSF shuttle driver and not just anybody can do that job. They are professional drivers set to the highest of standards. The job requires multiple certifications, required years of driving experience for a vehicle of that specification, as well as specified self-defence training. I have a lot of respect for the shuttle drivers because they are among the best drivers on our streets. They have a difficult and stressful job driving in this City with all the nuts and lunatics I see driving — especially SUVs and drivers staring at their phones while driving — who drive like they’ve never passed a driver’s test, and their new luxury vehicle didn’t come with turn signals.
With these two scabs I mentioned earlier, it was obvious to me that neither driver knew what they were doing with the UCSF shuttle bus they were about to drive because the destination sign on the front of the shuttle for both vehicles was incorrect, other than the colour indicator. When working correctly, the destination sign on the front of the vehicle changes to show the stops within that route. On the scab’s vehicles, this was not the case. It was static.
What I did notice was that a certain company had been brought in by the administration of UCSF at Parnassus Height to replace some striking employees and at least one of the striking shuttles (the Grey line), and that scab company’s solid black buses had crossed the striker’s picket line. Los Pendejos! That company was this company which you can see in the image at this link:
I also noticed that one of their solid black scab buses was replacing one of UCSF’s Grey line shuttles and it was stopped in the shuttle area. It was a gigantic black bus. Far oversized for what was needed. The UCSF shuttles are relatively small vehicles, as you can see in this image. The Grey line shuttles do use the larger shuttle vehicles in the fleet as seen at this image, but they’re not nearly as big as the scab vehicle brought in and especially for that late in the day.
That scab company is connected with the Tech Industrial Complex. I see those black techie shuttles among the 2-story tall wobbling tech shuttles with their blackened windows when they start coming in here from Silicon Valley daily.
I hope the UC employees had a successful strike, although I don’t think they got what they were asking for, unfortunately. But in the case of UCSF at Parnassus Height, the striking employees did show what the main campus would be like without them. It was virtually dead. Shut down. The opposite of the way it usually is. Chau.—el barrio rosa