State of Ohio

SEIU District 1199’s State division represents nearly 4,000 workers in 18 different agencies.  These state agencies include the Ohio Board of Nursing, the Ohio Department of Aging, the Ohio Department of Development, the Ohio Department of Youth Services, The Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities, the Ohio Medical Board, the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services, the Ohio Pharmacy Board, the Ohio School for the Blind, the Ohio School for the Deaf, the Ohio Adult Parole Authority, the Ohio Department of Health, the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, the Ohio Rehabilitation Services Commission, the Ohio Veterans Home, the Ohio Bureau of Worker’s Compensation, and the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction.
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State Contract (2018-2021)
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APC Meeting Minutes

State of Ohio Contract Negotiations Bargaining Update 7.31.2018

TWR_StateBargainingCampaignState of Ohio Contract Negotiations Bargaining Update

State Chapter Newsletter | July 31, 2018



Last week, SEIU District 1199 President Becky Williams, Secretary-Treasurer Kathy McCormick, Public Affairs Director Anthony Caldwell and our Membership Coordinator Lisa Hetrick joined our bargaining committee to check-in on the progress of negotiations and update our Bargaining Team on the great work our Union is doing to improve representation, increase membership support and push the Regan-Tokes and 25 and out legislation for APA members.


Designated Grievance Support Team: Our Union created a Member Resource Center (MRC), which added six (6) additional staff to defend our Union contract and file charges against the State when they violate labor laws. President Williams enrolled the State of Ohio members into the MRC first and since that date the MRC has helped our Delegates process 283 Grievances and of those grievances filed;

  • 79 have been settled
  • 64 are at step 2
  • 64 are going to mediation
  • 15 are ready to be arbitrated
  • 61 members withdrew after more information was gained

The State Bargaining Committee identified areas to further improve the MRC and those changes are being implemented now. 

  • Additional Union Benefits: In addition to our Contract, our Union increased Membership benefits by improving our two Member only benefit cards, awarding $1000 scholarships to members and their immediate family members and offering tuition-free college classes through Eastern Gateway Community College.
  • More Representational Staff: Our Union has increased the number of staff doing direct representation work for our members, including hiring two additional Administrative Organizers and returned to a regional structure for organizer assignments like we had when the State of Ohio came into SEIU.  The regional structure, both then and now, was set up to ensure organizers have less travel and more time with Members. This also allowed our Union to add a Cleveland-based Deputy Director (Cathy Kaufmann) and Organizer (Tracy Cutright) to the team of Union Staff leading and supporting State of Ohio members.
  • Increased Communication & Bargaining Campaign Activity: Our Union asked Director Joyce Gibson to lead the state bargaining campaign with our trusted Executive Vice President Josh Norris serving as the Chief Negotiator. These two leaders add their experience and expertise to our amazing negotiating committee lead by an incredible team of Members elected to represent their agency(s). Collectively, our Union has instituted regular bargaining updates and text messaging as well as provided “Together We Rise” badge pullies, “Union Strong” buttons and stickers and other tools to demonstrate UNITY during our fight for a fair contract.



TWR_PulliesLast week, we continued our negotiations with the State of Ohio where our SEIU/1199 negotiating committee has now presented the state with all of our economic proposals and continued discussions regarding the non-economic proposals that remain unresolved.

We are making progress on some of the language changes we demanded and our negotiating committee continues to stand strong on the issues that matter to you and your family. However, state negotiators continue to disregard your concerns.

That’s why now is the time to show your support for our new contract and our Union. Wear your “Union Strong” buttons and stickers to work, put on your “Together We Rise” name badge pullies and reach out to your bargaining committee members and tell them you have their back as well.

We have negotiations scheduled for three back-to-back sessions on August 15, 16, and 17. We remain hopeful that we will be able to reach agreement, but your support and solidarity will help us win on those issues that matter most to you.

If we are unable to reach a full agreement we anticipate heading to Fact Finding with Arbitrator Rob Stein.

In Solidarity,

Our SEIU/1199 Bargaining Committee




Our SEIU/1199 bargaining committee has been preparing for negotiations with the State of Ohio since early this year. 

We elected our committee, trained our team, researched the financial data of each state agency and prepared our proposals long ago to be ready to achieve the best contract possible for our Union members.

But then there is the State of Ohio…

Despite having an entire Office of Collective Bargaining, numerous lawyers for each state agency and labor relations officers, the State of Ohio has put Dan Guttman of the high-priced law firm BakerHostetler in charge of bargaining on the behalf of management.

Their strategy: Delay, delay, delay.

We will not allow their tactics to divide us from our ultimate goal of securing a contract that improves the lives of our members and their families.

They say “one day longer” and we get “one day stronger.”



State of Ohio members have been standing together to win favorable outcomes. These members with the State of Ohio bring a great deal of dedication to their work on behalf of the public. Below are some of the recent victories:

  • Ohio Department of Health– A member worked together with a delegate to file a class action grievance. This member and fellow co-workers are in a position important to the provision quality care and have been pushing for additional staffing and mandation reform. The member identified an issue with staffing and successfully acted with the support of fellow members to make an important improvement.
  • Opportunities for Ohioans With Disabilities– A member interviewed for an internal position but had to use several hours of PTO time to participate. After the process concluded, the agency clarified that PTO time was not needed for future internal interviews but the decision was not retroactive. After taking formal action, half of the PTO time used for the process was returned to the member.
  • Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction– A member with many years of experience with the State of Ohio received a work reprimand over a workplace issue. To the surprise of the worker, he was later disciplined again for the same incident. Working together with his shop delegate, the member showed that the issue had already been addressed with the original discipline and the secondary action was overturned.
  • Ohio Department of Veterans Services– A member was improperly denied an overtime opportunity. The member worked with the shop delegate to file a grievance and was credited with 4 hours of time.
  • Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction – After a member recently retired, ODRC posted the vacant position but at several ranges lower. The agency was obligated to advertise the position at the same class level. To defend the contract, the shop delegate filed a grievance and the position was re-posted at a facility nearby, an outcome that worked for both parties.
  • Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services – A member volunteered for overtime on a day off but was then mandated. Rules state that mandation is not allowed when working overtime on an off day. As a remedy, after acting, the member was skipped for her next mandation.

Action Alert – Union Strong Buttons and Decals

Member Action Alert 5.13.19
To stand together, members with SEIU District 1199 WV/KY/OH can now request buttons and household decals. You can contact the Member Resource Center with a request for you, your coworkers, and/or everyone at your worksite. 

SEIU button decal
If you are a member of SEIU District 1199 WV/KY/OH, call 877-419-SEIU, email, or you can make your request online with the Member Resource Center. We are stronger together. 

Reagan Tokes Act Clears House

Human Resources Merger – ODH and ODA

SEIU District 1199 recently learned that human resources with the Ohio Department of Health and the Ohio Department of Aging will merge. The change does not include merging any bargaining unit employees.

According to a notice sent by the State of Ohio, in July, three HR employees with the Department of Aging will move into the HR office for the Department of Health at 246 North High.  The State of Ohio says that the merger is part of an effort to find ways for the agencies to collaborate but there is no plan to merge the two agencies.

We will monitor this issue and let members know about any further changes. Please do not hesitate to reach out with any questions or concerns. 

Update on Improper Shift Differential for State of Ohio Nurses

It was discovered that approximately 677 nurses represented by SEIU District 1199 were not properly compensated for shift differential PPE on 5/26/18. The impacted nurses received $0.50 per hour instead of $1.00 per hour, as per the contract. 

SEIU District 1199 has contracted OCB and this issue is being resolved. We want members to know that checks will be issued on 6/22/18. 

The Union is always watching and doing everything we can to ensure that your contract is enforced and that issues are dealt with as they arise. 

SEIU District 1199 has your back!

In Solidarity, 

Josh Norris, Executive Vice President 
SEIU District 1199 WV/KY/OH

State of Ohio Updates Drug Free Workplace Policy

The State of Ohio has released an updated Drug Free Workplace Policy (HR-39) that is now effective. The policy has been updated in relation to recent changes in state law regarding medical marijuana.

The updated policy allows medical marijuana use for some employees who are not on active work status. For additional information, please see a copy of the updated policy at the link above. 

We Rise – Show Your Support For Unions

A decision in the Janus case is coming soon. Let’s show that no court decision will keep us from standing united. Working people are sticking together in their unions. 

Here’s one way to take a stand and support unions:

Step 1: Make a sign with the word UNION, like in the iconic movie Norma Rae. 
Step 2: Have someone take your photo or take a selfie holding the sign. This could be at your home, outside, or anyplace convenient and/or meaningful for you.
Step 3: Post the picture to social media such as Twitter, Facebook, etc. Post the photo with the hashtag #Union. If you’re located in Ohio, West Virginia, or Kentucky, show your support and tag SEIU District 1199 WV/KY/OH.
Step 4: Encourage others to take a stand as well. Share this page and there is also a flyer here that may be helpful.

Email your photos and we will share via our social media channels. You can also check out some of the early submissions on our Instagram page.

We are stronger united – together we rise!

State of Ohio – Contract Campaign Newsletter 6.01.18

State of Ohio Union Members,

I wanted to provide you with the latest information about our 2018 State of Ohio contract campaign.

Please click here to get the latest information including the dates of our first bargaining sessions.

In Solidarity,

Josh Norris
Executive Vice President

U.S. Supreme Court Decision Favors CEOs & Corporations, Limits Workers’ Rights

supreme courtThis week, the United States Supreme Court in a 5-4 decision restricted workers’ rights. The ruling limits the ability of private-sector workers to join together to address violations of labor law — such as wage theft, harassment, and discrimination. 

At a time when the deck is already stacked against working people and their families, this decision further erodes the bedrock rights of working people, while siding with the interests of corporations and CEOs. 

What Does the Decision Mean for Working People? Following this anti-worker ruling, employees may be forced to sign arbitration agreements. As a result, they will no longer be able to persue class action lawsuits when facing wage theft and/or other violations of labor law.

The likely impact of this case is that workers will be deterred from standing up for their rights. Under the new precedent, when workers do speak out, they may not only be denied the chance for collective action but forced to pursue expensive legal claims under a rigged system of corporate arbitration.

The timing of the decision is also important. A decision is expected soon in the anti-labor case Janus vs. AFSCME

We Are Stronger Together. The decision highlights the importance of unions and the need for working people to stand together. Working people are a force against inequity when they stand together. Union workers also have a vital and important voice in the workplace.

Read More (NPR): “Supreme Court Decision Delivers Blow To Workers’ Rights.”

Parole Officers Fight For Reagan Tokes Act

Because of the work of our Parole Officers through the Union, today we passed the Reagan Tokes Act (HB365) out of the Ohio House of Representatives Criminal Justice Committee by a vote of 10-1.

This is HUGE. Today’s victory would not have been possible without Parole Officers like you taking time out of your lives and work to come to Columbus for our Lobby Days and meet face-to-face with legislators about the need to address caseloads and staffing within the Adult Parole Authority. 

But it gets better than that. The Chairman of the Criminal Justice Committee, Rep. Nathan Manning (R-Lorain), introduced an amendment to create the Offender Supervision Study Committee within the Ohio Criminal Sentencing Commission.

• Within the creation of the committee, there are requirements for membership of the committee to include an active parole officer, among others. 
• There’s also a requirement that the group shall provide a recommendation to the General Assembly of changes to the revised code regarding all issues related to the supervision of offenders, including issues related to parole, community control, probation, community corrections, transitional control, and issues related to interstate compact policies.

Through our Union, Parole Officers now have a seat at the table going forward. That’s the power of collective action! 

The process still has many steps – but this is a major victory for our members. The next step will be a vote by the Ohio House of Representatives, then the bill will go to the Senate and eventually to Governor Kasich for his signature. I will keep you updated as the process moves forward. 

State of Ohio SEIU Member Open Health Care Enrollment

The open enrollment period for members of SEIU District 1199 with the State of Ohio is approaching. Enrollment will be open soon from 5/21 to 6/1 at 7:00 PM. 

Please see this open enrollment handout with important information and a checklist to prepare for open enrollment.

Included in the handout is information on benefits eligibility for dependents. Do not forget to verify your address information and review benefits coverage for yourself, a spouse, and/or dependents, if applicable. 

State of Ohio – Contract Campaign Newsletter 5.08.18

State of Ohio Union Members,

I wanted to provide you with the latest information about our 2018 State of Ohio contract campaign.

Please click here to get the latest information including the dates of our first bargaining sessions.

In Solidarity,

Josh Norris
Executive Vice President


State of Ohio – Contract Campaign Newsletter 4.12.18

Sisters & Brothers,

On behalf of the your SEIU District 1199 State of Ohio contract bargaining committee, we are excited to share our next newsletter. You can view the newsletter by clicking here.

In Solidarity, 

Your State Chapter Bargaining Committee

Parole Officers Union Appalled By Inaction On Reagan Tokes Act

Parole Officers Union Appalled By Inaction On Reagan Tokes Act
SEIU District 1199 says without SB202, SB 201 does little to keep our communities safe.

COLUMBUS, OHIO – In response to the passage of Senate Bill 201 by the Ohio Senate, SEIU District 1199 President Becky Williams issued the following statement:

“Today, the Ohio Senate chose to turn their backs on the safety and security of our Ohio’s families by refusing to address the real threats caused by the lack of appropriate caseloads for Ohio’s parole officers and failing to fix the broken system that monitors violent offenders released from prison.”

“The passage of Senate Bill 201 is an opportunistic political move in an election year that does nothing to keep our families safe once violent offenders are released into the community. While released offenders are subject to “post-release control”, just as they are now, without SB202/HB365, parole officers still will not have the staffing or the technology to properly monitor these offenders upon release.”

“On behalf of Ohio’s parole officers, we call on the Ohio House to reject Senate Bill 201 until such time as they can adopt a comprehensive approach to fixing our broken system like House Bill 365.”

Adult Parole Authority Lobby Day in Columbus

APAOn Wednesday, May 16th, the union will be holding an Adult Parole Authority Lobby Day for SEIU District 1199 members We will provide lunch and refreshments for all Parole Officers that attend. We will focus on two issues: 

• Reagan Tokes Act (HB365/SB202) 
OPERS Law Enforcement (25&Out) for Parole Officers

When: Wednesday, May 16th, 2018 from 10AM to 2PM. 
Location: We will meet at SEIU District 1199 (1395 Dublin Road, Columbus, OH 43215) and carpool to the Statehouse. 
Registration:  Register for the APA Lobby Day Here

 If you have any questions, please reach out to Anthony Caldwell at acaldwell@seiu1199 or call 877-419-7348. 

Ohio State Vice President Election Results

Ohio State Vice President Election Results:

• Nancy Cooper 131 Votes*
Mental Health & Addiction Svcs.
• Nancy Rhinock 93 Votes
Adult Parole Authority

2 write-in candidates received 1 vote each

*Denotes Winner

If you have any questions, please contact Mary Jo Ivan, Elections Chair, at 614-461-1199 or 1-800-227-1199.

State of Ohio – Contract Campaign Newsletter 3.28.18

Sisters and Brothers, 

On behalf of the your SEIU District 1199 State of Ohio contract bargaining committee, we are excited to share our next newsletter. 

You can view the newsletter by clicking here.

In Solidarity, 

Your State Chapter Bargaining Committee

State of Ohio SEIU District 1199 Member Tuition Reimbursement Fund Balance

Allocated funds for this fiscal year have been processed and approved. The current balance of the SEIU District 1199 tuition fund with the State of Ohio is $0.00.  The last portion of the approved funds will be received by employees when they receive their pay checks for the pay period that ended on March 17, 2018.

State of Ohio – Contract Campaign Newsletter 3.1.18

Sisters and Brothers, 

On behalf of the your SEIU District 1199 State of Ohio contract bargaining committee, we are excited to share our next newsletter. 

You can view the newsletter by clicking here.

In Solidarity, 

Your State Chapter Bargaining Committee

Election Notification: Ohio State Member Vice President

Sisters and Brothers of the SEIU District 1199 State of Ohio agencies, 

This serves as your official ELECTION NOTIFICATION for the vacant seat of Ohio State Member Vice President for the Service Employees International Union District 1199. 

You can view the full election schedule with dates, times and locations by clicking here.


Nancy Cooper
Mental Health & Addiction Services
Nancy Rhinock
Adult Parole Authority

If you have any questions, please contact Elections Chair Mary Jo Ivan at 614-461-1199 or my email at