Los Angeles school workers began a three-day strike over “unfair labor practices” and low pay on Tuesday, March 21, shutting down the nation’s second-largest school system.
According to the labor union SEIU Local 99, the workers – including cafeteria workers, special education assistants, custodians, and bus drivers – decided to strike following failed negotiations with the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD).
According to local news reports, LAUSD superintendent Alberto Carvalho called the walkout an unnecessary harm to students that will compound the setbacks of the COVID-19 pandemic and the 2019 teachers strike, when six school days were lost.
Carvalho said on March 20 that the district continues to “be available to have a conversation tonight, early morning and all throughout the day.”
California representative Adam Schiff said he stood with the protesters. “No one can live on $25,000. We must invest in schools and pay fair wages. It’s time to support those who support our kids.”
Footage posted by a local teacher shows the picket line in the rain outside Los Angeles’s Venice High School. Credit: @petateaches via Storyful