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Basic Grievance Chair Training

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State Employee Development Fund

The Employee Development Fund (EDF) renewed on July 1, 2019, with $750,000 in additional funding for FY20. We have been provided with the following update, which is current as of 2/4/20: 

Amount Paid (as of 12/21/19): $506,128.20
Amount Approved (as of 1/4/20): $15,294.97
Amount Submitted (as of 1/4/20): $5,464.75
Total Expended: $526,887.92

Budget + Rollover (FY20): $776,504.59
Total Remaining: $249,616.67
Percent Remaining: 32%

If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact the Member Resource Center.

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Technical & Therapist Unit Workers With Cabell Huntington Hospital Vote to Form a Union

Technical Workers and Therapist Unit – CT Specialist Techs, Medical Lab Tech II’s, Nuclear Medicine Techs, X-Ray Techs, Radiation Therapists, Respiratory Therapists, and Ultrasound Techs With Cabell Huntington Hospital Vote to Form a Union and Join Together With Hospital Nurses, Maintenance, and Service Workers 

By a majority vote, technical workers at Cabell Huntington Hospital say YES to joining a Union.

HUNTINGTON, WV – Yesterday, over 150 technical workers voted to stand together and negotiate with Cabell Huntington Hospital after voting to organize their Union with the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) District 1199 WV/KY/OH. In late 2019, 1,000 registered nurses with Cabell Huntington Hospital voted to unionize in one of the biggest organizing victories since West Virginia became a “right-to-work” state. SEIU District 1199 has also represented 1,000 service and maintenance workers with the hospital for over 40 years.

“The workers of Cabell Huntington Hospital work hard every day to provide the best quality care to the patients and community they serve,” said Joyce Gibson, Regional Director with SEIU District 1199 WV/KY/OH. “It is important that these workers have the ability to hold hospital executives accountable, and negotiate a fair and equitable legally binding contract.”

These technical workers have worked side-by-side with SEIU members in every area of Cabell Huntington Hospital. Now, they will all have a stronger voice together. SEIU now represents over 2,000 workers at Cabell Huntington Hospital.

“These important technical workers will have a voice in wages, benefits, and working conditions,” Gibson continued. “Like the other unionized workers at Cabell Huntington Hospital, they know that by uniting together, they can stand up for our patients, our community, and our families.”

Contact | Joyce Gibson, SEIU District 1199 Regional Director | 304-654-0824 |

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Solidarity Newsletter – February

Solidarity Newsletter 2.20.20
Member News and Grievance Victories
● Ohio ResCare Member Granted Mileage Reimbursement. A member with ResCare in Wood County, Ohio, was not reimbursed for mileage and expenses. Working with the Union, the member was issued a payment for $400 but was still not made whole. Standing together, the grievance has been resolved and an additional $150 payment was granted. 

● Discipline Against Mercy Allen Hospital Member Reduced. A member in Oberlin, Ohio, assisted another member with accessing workplace benefits. The member had worked for the hospital for 20 years and is a highly dedicated employee but had used a work computer to help a fellow co-worker outside of work time. The Union and member successfully argued that the discipline was unduly harsh and it was reduced to a “documented counseling,” which is not a formal form of discipline.

● Ohio Nursing Home Member Issued Settlement After Dispute. A member who worked for an Ohio nursing home was terminated after a disagreement. The member filed a grievance and reached a settlement that included being paid compensation for all unpaid PTO and sick time.

● Ohio Nurse Works With Union to Successfully Address Scheduling. A nurse with Mercy Regional Medical Center in Lorain, Ohio, works weekend shifts only. However, recently, the member was assigned to work on holidays that did not fall on the weekend. The Union advised that this was a contract violation and after this was raised with management, the scheduling issue was resolved.

● West Virginia Healthcare Member Secures Retroactive Pay. A ResCare member in Mineral County, West Virginia, was supposed to receive a wage increase in 2018 but the increase was not issued. The member had worked significant overtime and hours over the relevant period and worked with the Union to file a grievance after the employer recognized the wage increase but did not offer back pay. In a successful outcome, the member was issued $900 in retroactive pay. 

Member Resource Center Update
MRC Register
The Member Resource Center provides assistance each day to a substantial number of members across West Virginia, Ohio, and Kentucky. Whether you need a copy of your contract, assistance contacting Union staff, or advice on how to file a grievance, representatives with the Member Resource Center are standing by to assist members Monday through Friday. “Your Member Resource Center Has Your Back!”

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Big Sandy Health Care Members Reach Contract in Unanimous Vote

This week, members with Big Sandy Health Care in Prestonsburg, Kentucky, ratified a new no-concessions contract agreement. Members with Big Sandy Health Care work each day to provide critical health care services to the local area.

The three year no-concessions contract includes the following terms:

• Wages. Bargaining unit members will receive an $0.80 raise in the first year, a 4% raise in the second year, and a 4% raise in 2022. Start rates are also being increased by $0.40 in the first year, 4% in the second year, and 4% in the third year.
• Healthcare. Under this agreement, members will receive 100% employer paid healthcare coverage.
• Improved Contract Language. The contract includes language that will help the Member Resource Center provide enhanced representation to members of the bargaining unit.

Standing together in union, people from all walks of life are making a difference for their families and their communities. We are stronger together.

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Burlington House Members Stand Together to Negotiate New Contract With Improved Wages and Staffing

This week, members with Burlington House Rehabilitation and Alzheimer’s Center, a long-term care facility in Cincinnati, joined together in union to ratify a new 5 year contract agreement. No matter where we come from, we work hard for our families. Members with Burlington House took action together to reach this agreement, which will lift wages and help ensure quality care.

The contract provides for a number of improvements that range from staffing and safety to wages. This no-concessions contract includes the following terms:

• Paid Time Off (PTO). A new PTO scale recognizes the number of years that dedicated members have worked at the facility. With the new scale, most members will receive 2-4 additional PTO days each year.
• Annual Wage Increases. Members of the bargaining unit will receive annual wage increases that range from 2.5% to 3% during the first three years of the agreement. The contract will then re-open for further negotiations.
• Improved Start Rates. New start rates will lift wages for maintenance workers, cooks, and nurse aides. The start rate for State Tested Nurse Aides (STNAs) will now increase to $13 an hour. STNA’s below this level will be brought up to the new rate.
• Health and safety. The new contract includes health and safety language in the area of staffing, which is an important priority for members at this facility and others. 
• Improved Contract Language. New language included in the agreement will help provide representation through the Member Resource Center.

Congratulations to the bargaining committee and all members with Burlington House. We are stronger together. 

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State Newsletter – February 2020

State Newsletter

State of Ohio – Union Chapter News
● Update on Proposed OPERS Pension Plan Cuts. Last month, the OPERS Board of Trustees voted to approve cuts to retiree healthcare. The OPERS Board of Trustees has also proposed a cost-of-living (COLA) adjustment freeze for current retirees in 2022-2023 and for new retirees in the first two years after they retire. While retiree healthcare changes do not require legislative approval, changes to the COLA must be passed through the legislative process. Additionally, a bi-partisan group of legislators is preparing to propose bills that would bring further oversight to the pension system. We are following these developments and will keep members up to date. Contact OPERS about these changes through the form on this page.   

● Educational Development Fund Update. Last July 1st, the Educational Development Fund for members of SEIU District 1199 renewed with an additional balance of $750,000 available for reimbursement. As of January 4th, 32% of the budget and $249,616.67 remains available for reimbursement. This fund was negotiated as a part of the contract and allows reimbursement for approved training and educational expenses. In 2018, members negotiated a substantial increase in funding for the Educational Development Fund as a part of the current contract due to the fact that in previous years the fund had been depleted far in advance of the July 1st renewal date.

● State Member at the Department of Health Settles Overtime Grievance. A member with the Ohio Department of Health had her schedule change suddenly. In a successful outcome, the scheduling changes were classified as voluntary overtime, which means that such hours will count against mandatory overtime at a later time.

● State Member Successfully Appeals Fine. A member with the ODRC was fined relating to a patient care issue, which the member believed was beyond their capacity and control. After filing a grievance, the employer agreed to reduce the issue to corrective counseling, which is not a formal form of discipline and return the money from the fine.

● State Parole Officers Challenge Reprimand. A group of dedicated members with the Adult Parole Authority stood together to challenge a reprimand that they believed was unfounded. In a settlement, the employer agreed to remove such reprimands earlier than contractually obligated. 

● State Nurse Wins Grievance Relating to Mandation. A nurse with the Ohio Department of Veterans Affairs stood with his delegate to file a grievance. The nurse was mandated to work, however, the employer did not properly canvass for those who could work overtime and offer such overtime in line with seniority as prescribed by the contract.

SEIU District 1199 Member Benefits
Membership with SEIU District 1199 includes membership with three member benefit programs. Those programs include Union Plus, SEIU Member Benefits, and the SEIU District 1199 WV/KY/OH membership card. Members and eligible family members can now take classes with Eastern Gateway Community College at no-cost online or on campus in Youngstown or Steubenville. In 2019, Union Plus announced a new college program with Central State University in Dayton, Ohio. For details visit: seiu1199.org/mrc/your-benefits-as-a-member

Member Resource Center – State of Ohio Chapter

The Member Resource Center has provided assistance to a substantial number of members with the State of Ohio.
 Members have stood with their co-workers to win grievances, which relate to workplace health and safety, protection of the public, and fundamental fairness, among other issues. Representatives with the Member Resource Center are standing by to assist members. “Your Member Resource Center Has Your Back!”

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College Programs for Union Members

SEIU District 1199 offers discounts for members and eligible family members through arrangements with colleges. These programs include a range of benefits with Columbia Southern University, Southern New Hampshire University, Central State University, and Eastern Gateway Community College. 

Membership with SEIU District 1199 WV/KY/OH provides access to the member benefit programs detailed below. You can sign a membership card online at this link.

Free College Benefit SEIU District 1199
Ohio’s Eastern Gateway Community CollegeEastern Gateway offers a free online Associate’s Degree college benefit for members and retirees, in addition to eligible family members. If you live near Youngstown or Steubenville, you can also can participate in this program and take classes on campus. 

Ohio’s Central State University. Union Plus, one of your Union’s member benefit programs, has partnered with Central State University in Dayton, Ohio. Central State University is now offering a program for Bachelor’s Degrees for members and eligible family members. This program is available online at a reduced cost or low/no cost (e.g. depending on grants). The program is open to students with an Associate’s Degree or 60 credit hours of coursework in a related major. Additionally, students who have a degree from Eastern Gateway Community College can now transfer into the Bachelor’s Degree program at Central State University. 

Southern New Hampshire UniversitySNHU offers Bachelor’s Degrees and Associate’s Degrees for $3,000 a year for members and eligible family members.

Columbia Southern UniversityColumbia Southern offers Associate’s Degrees, Bachelor’s Degrees, Mater’s Degrees, and Doctoral Degrees. SEIU District 1199 has a tuition discount agreement for members. 

If you need assistance with your member benefits or a workplace issue, you can always contract the Member Resource Center. “Your Member Resource Center Has Your Back!”

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Spread the Love Peanut Butter Drive

Spread the Love Peanut Butter Drive 1.30.20
1 in 5 children live at risk of hunger. With your help – we can spread love and hope to children and families in West Virginia, Kentucky, and Ohio.

Please bring in a jar of peanut butter or other shelf-stable alternative and give it to your delegate, executive board member, or organizer. We will combine your donation with donations from our co-workers and deliver those to Head Start children and families in need.

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Mercy Springfield Members Unite to Ratify Contract With Path to $15

Congratulations to all members with Springfield Regional Medical Center. A new contract was ratified last week that includes substantial wage increases for the bargaining unit, including a path to a $15 by 2022. Members will move immediately to $13 an hour, which may equate to a substantial raise.

Below are some of the new terms of the no-concessions contract

A $15 an hour minimum wage for all members by 2022
Annual wage increases for workers who already make $15/hr (and above) 
Language that will give members a personal day, in addition to current PTO time
A new $1 an hour premium for environmental services members 
Non-discrimination language that will protect workers in several areas 
Reimbursement for ServSafe Training for nutrition services members
A simplified 2-step grievance procedure 

Congratulations to the member bargaining team for standing united to bargain this new contract. We are stronger together. 

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