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Indybay Feature
Sun Mar 16 2008
ESL Teachers To Go On Strike
Teachers Demand Health Care and Livable Wages
English as a Second Language (ESL) teachers at the San Francisco Institute of English (3301 Balboa St. at 34th Ave.) will go on strike starting Monday, March 17 at 8:30 am to demand livable wages and the return of health care benefits. The teachers have not had a cost-of-living increase to their wages in over 12 years. And in 2004, following changes in Homeland Security procedures that negatively impacted student enrollment, the teachers' health care benefits were taken away with the promise that they would be restored once enrollment returns to pre-September 11, 2001 levels. Enrollment is back up, but the teachers have yet to see their health care returned.

Conditions in the private/non-profit ESL industry have been declining for years, made worse because this sector has traditionally been non-union. Management at the San Francisco Institute of English have refused to negotiate, and the teachers feel like they have no choice but to strike. They are asking the community to support the strike by joining the picket line and by donating to their strike fund.

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