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UPE News Item

008 Meet and Confer Update

Cal-Works Class Average Score

     UPE and representatives from DHA met and conferred on Friday, September 25, 2020 over the Department’s plan to create a minimum test score required for workers to move from Medi-Cal/Cal-Fresh (MACF) HSS positions to Cal-Works HSS positions.  The Department proposed requiring workers to score an average of 80% on training class tests in order to move into their Cal-Works positions.  If workers failed to meet the required score, they would be placed back into a MACF position.  The Department stated that they could not guarantee these workers would return to their same positions because those positions may already be back-filled. 

      UPE believes that workers with permanent status in a class should be eligible for any position in that class regardless of the program.  If workers need more training in order to move to a new program, it is the Department’s responsibility to provide them with training.  The 80% cut-off appears to be an attempt by the Department to create a second probation for HSS workers assigned to MACF.  

      UPE raised a number of objections to this proposal.  Most importantly UPE views this proposal as changing the terms of our contract.  First, under the terms of our contract, workers are placed into their new program when they begin training for the new program.  This means that if workers did not pass their CW training, they would have to be involuntarily transferred back into a MACF position.  Our contract has specific language about how involuntary transfers are to occur, and the Department’s plan would require changes to this language.  Due to the waiver clause in our contract, UPE does not need to entertain proposals that alter the terms of the contract outside of contract negotiations.  At the meeting, UPE asserted this right.  The Department asked for time to review UPE’s position and the two sides will meet again.  

     We would like to thank the following 008 board members for their advocacy at this meet and confer: James Starr, Dan Herrera, James Kent-Basham, and Chris Jenkins.

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