Judge orders University of California workers to pause strike over Israel-Hamas war

A California state judge ordered thousands of University of California workers to pause their strike over the Israel-Hamas war,

Orange County Superior Court Judge Randall J. Sherman issued a temporary restraining order Friday, just days after the University of California (UC) filed a lawsuit against UAW 4811, a union that represents 48,000 academic and graduate workers, claiming their continued strike will cause the school system to “suffer irreparable harm.”

UC accused the union in the lawsuit, filed Tuesday, of breaching their contracts and also “endangering” research performed in the school’s laboratories. The union snapped back, saying the school system was shirking “accountability” for its actions.

“We are extremely grateful for a pause in this strike so our students can complete their academic studies. The strike would have caused irreversible setbacks to students’ academic achievements and may have stalled critical research projects in the final quarter,” Melissa Matella, associate vice president for labor relations for the University of California, said following the judge’s decision.

UAW 4811 represents over 48,000 graduate students who work in various capacities, such as tutors, researchers and teaching assistants. The union kicked off the strike on May 20 in Santa Cruz. Since then, it has expanded to UC campuses in Los Angeles Davis, Santa Barbara, Irvine and San Diego.

Union members have said previously that their free speech was stifled when school leaders called in law enforcement to forcibly remove the pro-Palestinian encampments. 
UAW 4811 said Friday night that the “struggle” is far from over and stated that “the law is on our side and we’re prepared to keep defending our rights.”

Copyright 2024 Nexstar Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

For the latest news, weather, sports, and streaming video, head to The Hill.