American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Local 3299 says its members will walk off the job at the university system's five hospitals May 21 and May 22.
UC officials and the union have been in negotiations since last summer for a new contract covering some 13,000 patient care workers. The contract expired Oct. 1, and the contentious talks deadlocked earlier this year.
AFSCME says it's fighting to fix unsafe hospital conditions and foolish spending by high-level university officials who enrich themselves while seeking cuts to employee compensation.
The university counters that the union's real aim is to avoid new state laws that significantly reduce retirement benefits for new pension-system members.
This isn't the first time that AFSCME Local 3299 has threatened a walkout. In 2008, the union called a strike at all five UC medical centers. A San Francisco Superior Court judge issued a restraining order. The union ignored it and walked off the job for five days in July that year.