Education

‘This is not acceptable’: UC Davis student employees stage walkout over payment delay

UC Davis Chancellor Gary May, pictured in 2017, said that payment information for 95 student employees was corrected Friday, and more payments would be sent out Tuesday and Wednesday of next week.
UC Davis Chancellor Gary May, pictured in 2017, said that payment information for 95 student employees was corrected Friday, and more payments would be sent out Tuesday and Wednesday of next week. Sacramento Bee file

Hundreds of student employees at UC Davis were not paid on time due to a payroll processing problem, prompting walkouts on campus.

In a statement sent out to the community Friday, UC Davis Chancellor Gary May acknowledged that about 500 university faculty and staff, including 300 undergraduate student employees, reported a delay in their payment.

May went on to apologize for the delay and said many of the payment issues were related to UCPath, a new University of California payroll system adopted Oct. 1.

“UC Davis staff worked around the clock for more than a year to prepare our systems and our employees for the migration,” May said in a prepared statement. “However, many of the issues pre-date the transition to UCPath and are a result of our campus’s own hiring and onboarding processes, both of which will receive our immediate attention, review and improvement.”

The Davis Enterprise reported Thursday that student employees, many of whom have not been paid since late September, staged a walkout to protest the unpaid wages.

UC Davis spokeswoman Melissa Blouin said more than 100 students participated in the Thursday walkout and the campus coffeehouse, CoHo, was closed as a result.

May said that payment information for 95 student employees was corrected Friday, and more payments would be sent out Tuesday and Wednesday of next week.

“This is not acceptable. I take my responsibility for the welfare of our students very seriously, and I am very concerned about the impact this has had on them,” May said. “We are doing everything we can to fix this problem.”

May directed students affected by the payment delays to apply for an emergency advance through UCPath, which could supply up to $1,000 interest-free for employees.

Other UC campuses have reported payment delays after switching to UCPath, leaving paycheck-to-paycheck students short on options.

Vincent Moleski covers business and breaking news for The Bee and is a graduate student in literature at Sacramento State. He was born and raised in Sacramento and previously wrote for the university’s student newspaper, the State Hornet.
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