SEIU 1021

Sonoma County members ratify new contract with big gains
Members considered "extra-help," those whose classifications are below market, and those who are bilingual will see extra benefits


Friday, April 21, the votes were counted: Sonoma County members of SEIU 1021 voted by 92% to ratify their hard-won tentative agreement that nets hefty increases across the board for county workers, with some extra benefits for those who need it the most.

“We’re extremely proud to have not only scored the most lucrative contract Sonoma County members have ever seen, but for providing significant improvements for those who needed it the most–our ‘extra-help’ (per diem) staff, our classes making less than market rate, and our bilingual employees,” said outgoing SEIU 1021 Sonoma County Chapter President Jana Blunt

Some highlights of the new agreement include:

  • 13.5% cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) over the 3 years of the agreement, starting with 5% in year one
  • No pension takeaways (County administration pushed hard for concessions)
  • Average 4% equity adjustment on top of COLAs
  • Rollover of $600 monthly cash allowance into wage scale (making it subject to COLAs, overtime, and available for extra-help employees)
  • Increased County contribution to medical benefits
  • Retiree medical portability for those hired before 2009
  • Bilingual pay improvements (increased to $1.50 per hour for fluent level; now applies to all paid statuses, not just hours worked)

“We were only able to do this by sticking together. The County attempted to divide us by offering smaller factions a worse deal. Our members rallied together as one unit, and that’s how we got the best contract for everyone, without leaving anyone behind,” said Blunt.

Members showed up by the hundreds to several actions at the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors meetings, even in freezing rain; came out to numerous unity breaks at various worksites around the county; wore union gear to work for visibility; submitted 400+ emails to the Board of Supervisors advocating for the County to address its staffing crisis by raising wages; and spoke out during public comment at Board of Supervisors meetings.

The Board of Supervisors will vote on the contract on May 9.

Congratulations, Sonoma County members!