Region E Newsletter – June 2021
Amador, Calaveras, and San Joaquin County
Taffie Walter, San Joaquin County Chapter President
I have worked as a Psychiatric Technician at Behavioral Health Services for 16 years, caring for the mentally ill in our community. As a mother and resident of Stockton, I believe that all workers deserve the right to earn a living that provides for them and their families. As union brothers and sisters we must stand together against any injustice that threatens our ability to win fair contracts and protect all workers. Last year I witnessed the power of our union by working diligently alongside other member leaders in contract negotiations and our Unfair Labor Practice strike against the board of supervisors. We showed the County Administration what happens when our members unite.
As chapter president of our newly elected leadership team we are excited to uplift the voices within our membership. We have newly formed committees that every member should seek to be a part of. By joining a committee we can make sure that our actions as a chapter are inclusive and reflect the diversity within our chapter.
IT Dept. at San Joaquin Co. Hospital Wins Grievance
IT workers at San Joaquin County Hospital are celebrating their victory after winning a grievance that they filed against management for owed back pay and a unilateral change in working conditions.
Members initially brought their concerns to management but were shut down. After referencing their contract, it became clear that they’d need to collectively enforce the agreement using the grievance process.
“We knew filing the grievance would be for the benefit of our entire department,” said Amanpreet Kaur, an IT Analyst at San Joaquin County Hospital. “With the guidance of our reps, we could stand confident in knowing that management was in the wrong and we can take action. As a department, we stayed informed through the entire process (9 months) and knew that we were protected. That’s the power of our union.”
Our power doesn’t come from our contract alone but from our collective strength and our ability to stand united to hold management accountable. These members demonstrated that no matter how long it takes when we stand together, we win!
Calaveras Bargaining Team is Ready to Win!
Calaveras County is preparing to bargain with management for a new contract that will prioritize fair wages, health benefits, and avoid layoffs, amongst other details. The bargaining team is excited and expects a fierce negotiation with management.
“We are ready to fight for what’s best for our membership,” said Dan Cooper, a Household Hazardous Waste Technician for Calaveras County. “I’ve worked in previous jobs where we weren’t afforded the opportunity to advocate for ourselves. Contract negotiations should not be taken lightly. Anytime we can have a say in our wages and benefits, we should engage wholeheartedly. To my fellow members, if you are experiencing any type of issues on the job now is the time to make your bargaining team aware. We will make sure your concerns are heard at the table.”
Amanda Ayers Reflects on Completing the Member Internship Program
Participating in the Member Internship Program was a great experience. I’ve been a member of SEIU 1021 for 6 years and I’ve always had questions about our organization and how to get involved. Most of my interactions were with my field representative, and I wasn’t too familiar with the nuts and bolts of our Union. Once I joined the member internship program that all changed. The program required me to take 3 month of approved leave from the job and participate full time with our union. I participated in actions and trainings with chapters throughout our local that taught me how to organize and empower our fellow members. Without a doubt, the highlight of my experience was learning how to speak directly with my coworkers on the power and importance of having a strong union. Having conversations in confidence about who we are and why we matter is critical to growing the power of our union.
Our chapter is changing for the better, but that doesn’t happen overnight. We need active members who are willing to be trained and involved when it comes to workplace issues. I recommend that you join a committee, sign up for the membership trainings that our union offers, and reach out to your co-workers who are not active. In order to get what we want (fair contracts), we need your input and contributions.
Join A Chapter Committee Now!
SJC members! Your involvement in one of our 8 committees is essential to making sure we hear the voice of our membership. Your active participation as a member is critical to winning good contracts, providing for our families, and electing leaders in our community that fight for us. Sign up today! A description and contact information for each committee is below.
NEO – New Employee Orientation Committee
The NEO Committee will play an essential role in communicating Union information to newly hired employees to assist with activating their membership into the Union. Committee members will be trained on the presentation for signing up new hires during New Employee Orientations held by the County. This committee will meet at least monthly and at a date and time determined by thecommittee.
Contact Cheryl Harris or Alejandro Martinez
Shop Steward Committee
This is a committee that includes Union Stewards throughout the Chapter and Region and will meet at least monthly to discuss multiple worksite issues affecting the membership including training opportunities and ways to build strength at the worksites
Contact Easu Hernandez
email@example.com , 209-817-5892
This committee will work with staff and the Locals Communication Team in creating a San Joaquin County Chapter Newsletter and will meet at least monthly.
Contact Andrea Colavita Pinkham
This committee will review & make recommendations for any changes in the Local Bylaws which are subject to approval by the Local and will meet as needed.
Contact Dennis Mallory
This committee will set up and assist in various elections within the Chapter. The committee will work with Field Staff and Support Staff for Bargaining Team Elections, Contract Ratification Votes, and other votes that may come up and the committee will meet as needed.
Contact Reina Arroyo
The Committee on Political Education Committee will work with the Political Organizer on local and statewide politics. They will assist with political campaigns for candidates and will meet monthly.
Contact John Shaban
This committee will work with field staff to organize each department within the County to build member participation, union membership, communications, and structure. This committee will meet as needed.
Contact Cheryl Hicks
This committee is an elected committee per the MOU with one represented member from each Bargaining Unit. This committee will meet with the County to bring forward and discuss safety issues that affect our membership.
Contact Bill Petrone