City of San Rafael member Julie Poirier shares how Marin County members plan to level up their approach to bargaining by coordinating strategies across different workplaces and employers
“When SEIU 1021 members around Marin County realized how many of
our contracts were set to expire this year, it was clear that we
needed a plan to coordinate. That’s why on March 25, SEIU Chapter
leadership across Marin met to network, talk strategies for
bargaining, and gain insight into what our different issues and
concerns look like.
Union stewards from Marin County, City of San Rafael, City of Sausalito, City of Novato, and other Marin SEIU 1021 chapters were in attendance. We know that city and county administrators talk amongst each other; so, too, should SEIU stewards and leadership communicate and keep each other informed.
Our vision is to use this network to increase our bargaining awareness, borrow shared language in contracts, and seek advice from other stewards. Our next meeting is scheduled for April 22, and attendees are looking forward to growing the connections between our chapters.
The networking aspect of this event may be one of the longest lasting, but a refresher on member engagement (before, during, and after bargaining,) along with strategies for negotiations, and Covid concerns, were all topics of conversation as well.
On a more personal note, it was great to make connections with other stewards who may be going through the same thing we are, or who have been through challenges and can offer advice, support, or provide space to vent. I was able to connect with a chapter leader from Marin County Courts named Ellen, and we exchanged personal contact information and continued our chat from March 25 into the following week. It was validating in so many ways to talk to her one-on-one, and I’m looking forward to more opportunities to build the collective power of SEIU 1021 members across Marin County.”