About Your Union: UC-AFT Local 1474

University Council: American Federation of Teachers (UC-AFT)
Berkeley-San Francisco Local 1474


UC-AFT is the union that represents lecturers, librarians, and out-of-unit academic members at the University of California. Since 1983, this union has been responsible for negotiating and administering the statewide collective bargaining agreements, also called Memoranda of Understanding (MOU), that govern the basic terms and conditions of employment for all UC lecturers (Unit 18) and librarians (Unit 17).

Lecturers and librarians are currently the only UC academics with collective bargaining rights systemwide. However, any UC academic employee, Senate or non-Senate, may join the union.

“University Council” means that we are a Council of local unions representing members on all UC campuses; “AFT” refers to our affiliation with the national union by that name. Your local is UC-AFT Local 1474, which represents academics at the Berkeley and San Francisco campuses.


Before UC-AFT negotiated its first contracts with UC, working conditions and salaries for non-Senate faculty and librarians were completely arbitrary, subject only to the whim of the university administration. For example, after 8 years of teaching at any UC campus, lecturers were automatically terminated, no matter how superb their performance or how badly their skills were needed. UC-AFT put an end to this system, winning for lecturers with a record of 6 years of excellent teaching the right to more stable employment: initially (in the 1986 MOU) to 3-year contracts with an expectation of renewal, and later (in the 2003 MOU) to continuing, career appointments.

The MOU for Unit 18 lecturers also provides limited but important protections for lecturers before their sixth year. Moreover, since the 2003 Unit 18 MOU provided for third-party arbitration for the most important provisions, it has been far more enforceable than previous agreements. We also won significant gains for lecturers and librarians in the areas of salary, benefits, professional development support, academic freedom, and due process rights in 2003 and subsequent negotiations.

The work of non-Senate faculty and librarians is at the core of both the teaching and research missions of UC. We believe fulfilling these missions requires professional working conditions. In future negotiations, your bargaining representatives will continue to advocate for higher salaries, including parity with Senate faculty, better benefits, improved job security, regular merit reviews/increases, career equity, realistic workloads, and increased professional recognition and support. Thanks to the increased funding provided by the California “Fair Share” law, we have union staff on all the campuses. Their job is to assist local leaders in building the local organization, and to help protect the people we represent.


All Unit 18 lecturers and Unit 17 librarians are covered by UC-AFT contracts, and have the legal right to UC-AFT representation, whether or not they are union members. To cover the costs of representation, all members of those units are therefore required by state law to pay UC-AFT agency dues or fees, regardless of membership status. This is called “fair share”, and it consists of a small percentage of your salary, deducted automatically from your pay check each month. Its use is carefully regulated by state law.

But the University’s withholding of “Agency fees” does not automatically make you a member of your UC-AFT local. To join the union, you must fill out and submit a membership form. If you are a union member, your dues will be recorded on your pay statement as “UC-AFT Dues”; if you are not a union member, the deduction will be recorded as “Agency Fee.” If you are a represented lecturer or librarian, the amount of your deduction will not change when you join the union, though non-members may request a small refund annually, as required by state law.

There are two important advantages to joining the union. First, higher membership numbers show support for the Union’s work, on campus and at the bargaining table. Second, only union members may vote to elect local leadership and ratify contracts. Note that your membership status is confidential; your department does not know if you are a member.

Please join UC-AFT now by clicking on the link below and then downloading, printing, and completing the membership form:


You may scan the completed, signed form and email it to Michelle at msquitieri@ucaft.org, or fax it to her at 510 779-5211 (make sure to dial 510 even if you're in 510) or mail it to the address on the form or to

Michelle Squitieri
UC-AFT Local 1474
1332 Shattuck Ave. #6
Berkeley, CA 94709.

For more information, contact a colleague or staff person from the list below.



Joi Barrios
Lecturer, South and Southeast Asian Studies, UCB
Local President, Unit 18 Grievance Steward

Jonathan Lang
Lecturer, College Writing Programs, UCB
Local Vice-President, Unit 18 Grievance Steward, Bargaining Representative

Kathryn Klar
Lecturer, Celtic Studies, UCB
Local Treasurer

Harrison Dekker
Head, Library Data Lab
Unit 17 Grievance Steward and Bargaining Representative

Inez Hollander
Lecturer, Dutch Studies, UCB
Unit 18 Grievance Steward

Karen MacLeod
Academic Specialist, Department of Physiology, UCSF
Member-at-Large and Labor Council Delegate

John Wallace
Lecturer, East Asian Languages and Cultures, UCB

Michelle Squitieri
Field RepresentativeU, C-AFT Local 1474
510 384-6727