After nine months of bargaining and a historic strike, workers at Tenderloin Housing Clinic have ratified a new contract
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Andrew Baker, firstname.lastname@example.org or 510-679-8420
(San Francisco, CA) On Friday, September 2, members of SEIU Local 1021 working at Tenderloin Housing Clinic (THC) voted overwhelmingly to ratify a new contract with management. This ratification comes on the heels of over nine months at the bargaining table, as well as what is believed to be a historic, first-ever strike at a city-funded supportive housing nonprofit.
After a tremendous outpouring of support from community members and elected officials during the strike, the City’s Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing, which determines funding amounts for nonprofits contracted with the City, announced that they would increase the funding allocated to cover the wages of supportive housing workers to a livable amount. This allowed workers and THC management to finalize negotiations.
“This agreement was only possible because workers at THC stayed united. We fought back and refused to cave into management’s proposed concessions. We stood up to the city, demanding better for our workforce, clients, and community. This agreement is proof of what we can win when we stand together as a union,” said Evan Oravec, a community organizer at THC and our union’s Chapter President.
“For many THC workers, this new contract will allow them to catch up on bills or finally have enough money left over each month to save for emergencies. For most of this, this job is a labor of love—but that doesn’t mean we deserve to be only 1-2 missed paychecks away from needing the very services we are providing. I’m proud to say that this agreement will make it easier for THC workers to focus on providing the essential support services that our residents rely on us for. It’s a win for everybody,” said Hattie Patterson, a Desk Clerk at Tenderloin Housing Clinic.
Members will see an immediate pay increase of 7-35% depending on classification, with an average raise of 22% as a result of this agreement. They also secured Juneteenth as a holiday, and mental health days that would allow them time to rest and recover when necessary. This is a key victory for workers, a number of whom report witnessing or being the target of verbal harassment and abuse and, in some instances, physical violence or death.
The approximately 300 members of THC staff represented by SEIU 1021 do critical work to keep San Francisco’s homelessness and supportive housing system functioning. They work as desk clerks, janitors, case workers, maintenance staff, and more at 24 of the city’s Single-Room Occupancy hotels (SROs).
Workers came to the bargaining table with proposals to address employee mental health, burnout, and turnover—all of which have an impact on resident services. Knowing that THC receives the majority of its funding from the City and County of San Francisco, workers also called on elected officials and city leaders to allocate enough money to address wage compaction and provide meaningful wage increases for the entire workforce.
THC came with a number of proposals aimed at undermining their employees’ union rather than addressing workplace issues. After a series of informational pickets and a delegation to management, those proposals were taken off the table. A lack of clear response and information on funding from both management and the city’s Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing ultimately led to a 24-hour strike on July 27, 2022.