State Worker bargaining update 3-19-2015

 Energy around bargaining is building

DAS Barg 2015ABetween March 17th and 18th we had over 2000 people participate in almost 100 statewide actions. [FB photo gallery] With our Fair Shot for All community and labor partners, we highlighted that we share common values for economic justice from Ontario to Coos Bay! The high energy at these actions shows that after years of making sacrifices, we are ready to create a future where work is valued and everyone is treated with respect and dignity.

At the bargaining table, Wednesday was the last day to introduce new proposals. We exchanged economic proposals with management. While management is not proposing a step freeze in our next contract, they have not given us a proposal for cost-of-living increases either. Instead, they plan to offer a counterproposal to our cost of living proposal later in negotiations. And, similar to two years ago, management made a health insurance proposal that would cap their health insurance contributions at our expense – this is unacceptable!

We made the following economic proposals:

A cost-of-living increase on July 1 of each year of the contract that would be CPI plus 2% with a minimum increase of 2% and a maximum increase of 6%
Steps in each year of the contract
Maintaining the current health insurance language
“Buying-out” the 6% PERS contribution [PERS FAQ] [PERS past and future video] Adding 2 steps to the top of the pay scale
Creating a $15 minimum wage for all state employees
Working with the State to examine and address the gap in pay that exists between women and men who do jobs with similar skill levels

Click here for a full summary of our non-economic and economic proposals.

Do your part to win a fair contract by joining your co-workers on April 15 when workers all over the state will be taking a 15 minute break in support of a $15 living wage for state workers and all Oregonians. We’ll also need to send a message to the State that we won’t accept a health care proposal that puts all the risk of health care cost increases on us.
We meet again with management on April 1st (no fooling!) to start digging deeper into all of our proposals.

Don’t forget your weekly purple up days!

In Unity,

State Worker Central Table Bargaining Team

Steve Demarest, Co-Chair – Employment Department
Mary Stewart, Co-Chair – Department of Revenue
Wayne Ground, Dept of Human Services / Oregon Health Authority
Brant Johnson, Oregon State Hospital
Sandi Kalin, Department of Administrative Services
Noel Magee, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife
Rolando Ramirez, Oregon Youth Authority
Mike Scott, Oregon Department of Transportation
Heather Conroy, SEIU 503 Executive Director
Heather Blankenheim, SEIU 503 Staff

Contact your bargaining team at stateworkerbargaining@seiu503.org.

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