In the academic year 2000-2001, the University of Hawaii Professional Assembly (UHPA) sought to

bargain a contract on its conventional cycle for the period 2002-2003 with the State of Hawaii. The effort

failed, leading to a two-week strike in April, coinciding with a state-wide strike of the Hawaii State

Teachers Association (HSTA). For the first time in U.S. history the entirety of a state’s public education

system was on strike with its state employer. For UHPA the strike had been provoked primarily by the gap

between the state’s salary offer and the union’s request. To place the matter in context, during the 1990’s,

while the other states had experienced “Clinton prosperity” with a record number of quarters of positive

economic growth, Hawai’i (its economy closely tied to Japan’s) had lagged, entering negative growth in

1996. From 1993 onward, the University struggled to maintain its state budgetary support, and collective

bargaining for all public unions was a tortured affair. Matters came to a head in the strike of April 2001.

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