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Court rejects HSTA request to scuttle new contract

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The state Supreme Court has rejected a request by the Hawaii State Teachers Association to compel the Hawaii Labor Relations Board to provide teachers with immediate relief from a new contract imposed by the state.

The teachers union wanted relief from a 5 percent salary reduction and an equal split on health insurance premiums while the union pursues a prohibited practices complaint against the state with the labor board.

The state imposed its "last, best and final" contract offer over the summer after the teachers union declined to take a tentative agreement to its members for a vote.

The Supreme Court also ruled that the teachers union may exercise its right to strike once the prohibited practices complaint with the labor board is resolved.

The teachers union had indicated previously that it was the union’s belief that teachers could not strike until several of its labor complaints against the state were resolved.

The University of Hawaii Professional Assembly intervened as a party in the teachers union’s complaint over the imposed contract in part because the faculty union wants to preserve the right to strike.

 

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