Monthly Archives: December 2013

AFT 1493 celebrates 50th anniversary!

AFT Local 1493 turned 50 years old in November 2013 and the Local held a 50th Anniversary party on November 15, 2013 at the Cañada Vista Clubhouse, that brought together faculty and union activists from every decade from 1963 to 2013. Read the full story here.
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December 2013

The Advocate – 37.3
December 2013

In this issue:


December 2013 Advocate – California Health Insurance Website

How to explore the Covered California website to find health insurance options

Covered California is the state insurance exchange set up for Californians under the ACA. Here is a brief tour on how to explore your coverage options. The official web site is at: When you access the site you will see this opening page:


We used the tool that is available when you push the Start Here link. Note also there is a number to call directly, if you do not want to use the internet to explore your options. The next screen brings up a series of windows that ask basic information to access the plans and the costs you will pay under the plans:


Choose the Preview Plans link. The next screen will guide you through the process of selecting plans for comparison. Enter your zipcode, your income per year (adjusted gross income), members in your household, and your age:


The next screen is entitled “Here is What You Told Us.” It shows the information you entered and then shows a Preview Plans link.


The next screen includes a cost estimator. On this screen you identify the level of medical needs for yourself and those in your household. There is a link for you to browse for you doctors also.


The next screen shows the plans and costs. The number of plans will vary, but there will be a sample of bronze, silver, gold and platinum plans for you to browse. The premium costs are displayed, any reimbursement assistance that you qualify for, and a selection of plans. You can browse through all of the plans by selecting the   ͢  [arrow] button. There is also a Favorites link at the top, so you can select the plans you want to examine further. The screen will display up to four plans at a time.

Although we are still shopping, there was one aspect of the ACA that stood out for us. Under the new ACA-qualified plans, your maximum out-of-pocket will never exceed $6350.00 per year. There is no lifetime cap. For Lin, an older adjunct, this is huge. “If I lost my healthcare coverage, and I feel assured by the new ACA. Under the old private plans I used to purchase, I would hit that lifetime cap if I had a catastrophic medical condition or accident. I would face bankruptcy. Under the ACA, that will no longer happen. The out-of-pocket might be a drain on my savings overtime, but the lack of a lifetime cap is huge improvement for average working Americans.”


The > links allow you to expand each coverage item and compare costs (coinsurance or copays) for each plan.

Our Tips

Try your options several times, just to make sure you are getting accurate information. We also have heard that the phone assistance is quite helpful. On occasion we could not get access, possibly due to traffic or maintenance going on, but this was not a huge problem for us. We did try exploring options on wifi/public systems, and the site was a little slow. We had better luck on our home networks.


December 2013 Advocate – Part-Timers’ Rights

Unemployment benefits available to adjuncts

All Part-timers should remember that you are eligible for unemployment compensation benefits over the winter break and during the summer break, unless you are working another job between semesters or over the summer and you are earning more than your unemployment grant would be. As soon as you give your last final exam, you should contact the local Employment Development Dept. (EDD) office and file a claim, or reactivate the one you have from last summer (if you applied then).  If it is a new claim, you will have a one-week waiting period before benefits start, so do not delay. You can also claim for the period between regular terms and summer school.

    When applying, tell them about all your jobs, since your benefit is based on all your income over the previous year. When they ask if you have a job to go back to after summer break, you should answer: “Not with reasonable assurance. I only have a tentative assignment contingent on enrollment, funding and program needs.”

    This is important. Do not just tell them that you have an assignment for Spring or Fall or you will be disqualified.

    According to the Cervisi decision of the State Court of Appeals, part-timers, as a class, do not have “reasonable assurance” of a job and hence are eligible for benefits between terms. If questioned further, mention the Cervisi case. Be sure to fill out all job search forms correctly, and appear as directed in person or by phone or mail. You should not have any problems, but if you do and are denied for any reason, call Dan Kaplan in the AFT office (650-574-6491) as soon as possible and the Union will advise you on how to file an appeal. Don’t be reluctant to file. This is your right, not charity.

December 2013 Advocate – Union Scholarships

Union college scholarships available to children of AFT 1493 members


The CFT offers scholarships to high school seniors and college students who are children or dependents of CFT members in good standing. Students enrolled in four-year courses of study are eligible for $3000 scholarships; those enrolled in two-year courses of study are eligible for $1000.

    Award selection is based on academic achievement, special talents and skills, participation in extracurricular activities, community service, financial need, and a 500-word essay on a social issue of the applicant’s choice. Scholarships are awarded for any one year of higher education. Students who received scholarships as high school seniors are not eligible for another scholarship during college.

    The program began in 1997 when delegates to the CFT Convention voted to establish scholarships that could help children and dependents of members achieve their higher education goals. The program was named after inspirational CFT leader Raoul Teilhet. Teilhet served the organization as president from 1968 to 1985. Eligibility is available to high school seniors and continuing college students and includes dependents of deceased CFT members.

Raoul Teilhet Scholarships

Links to applications:

Deadline to submit applications: January 10

Deadline to submit applications: July 1

For more information or to get a hard copy of an application mailed to you, contact the AFT 1493 office at x 6491.

    More scholarships and professional grants are available to members and their dependents through the AFT and the AFL-CIO.  See the Porter and Union Plus Scholarhip programs described in the right column.

Robert G. Porter Scholarship Program

    The AFT awards four $8000 scholarships to high school seniors who are dependents of AFT members, as well as 20 continuing education grants of $1000 to AFT members. Application deadline: March 31. To learn more, email, phone (800) 238-1133 extension 4457, or go to the Porter Scholars web page.

Union Plus Scholarship Program

    The AFL-CIO offers scholarships ranging from $500 to $4000 to union members, their spouses, and their dependents who are enrolled at an accredited institution of higher education. Scholarships are also available to graduate students. Application deadline: January 31. Learn more from the Union Plus Scholarship web page.