Police officers at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh went on strike yesterday after contract negotiations between their union and the university fell through on Sunday.
The campus police department, represented by Teamsters Local 249, has been negotiating for nearly eight months in a total of 19 meetings, The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reported.
Keith Frank, the union’s vice president, told Action News 4 that a number of issues remain unresolved, including wages, retirement and health-care benefits.
“This isn’t where we want to be,” Frank said. “We want to be suited up in uniform doing the job that we signed up to do. Unfortunately, we can’t continue to go down this path of falling behind all the other officers out there.”
Gabriel Welsch, executive vice president of marketing and communications at Duquesne, said in a statement that the university had negotiated in “good faith” since August 2022.
“The University’s total compensation package offered most recently to our police officers and security guards is among the most generous in higher education in our region, and includes other significant compensation and incentives,” the statement read. “While the Union has stated an intention to strike, Duquesne remains committed to the negotiating process with commitment to reach a resolution with the union.”
Welsch also noted that the campus police chief has “robust plans” in place to keep the campus safe and running as usual.