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State of Ohio Chapter Newsletter

State Newsletter September 2019 State of Ohio – Union Chapter News

• Educational Development Fund Update. On July 1st, the Educational Development Fund for members of SEIU District 1199 renewed with an additional balance of $750,000 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. The Union will provide regular updates on the balance of the fund as the fiscal year continues.

• Successful Training Events Held for State Members. In August, intermediate and advanced delegate trainings were held at the SEIU District 1199 office in Columbus. Over 50 state delegates attended the two trainings on how to further stand with their co-workers. The Advanced Delegate Training held on August 28th is pictured above.

• State Nurses Win Class Action Grievance. A group of nurses with the State of Ohio recently won a class action grievance with a favorable ruling from an arbitrator. The nurses had been asked to transfer bio-hazards to the basement of their workplace when other means of disposal were not available. The arbitrator ruled in favor of the nurses, as contract language is clear that the proper role for such state nurses is limited to the provision of healthcare services. The Arbitrator said in his decision “…in the absence of irregular or unusual circumstances requiring RNs to remove other bio-hazardous waste (other than sharps), regardless of its accumulation rate and existing need for removal, is in violate of Section 42.04 of the Agreement and the Employer is directed to cease this specific requirement of RNs and to develop a viable alternative to the removal.”

• State Member Reimbursed $1,500 After Successful Grievance. A state member took a $1,500 course for the benefit of their work on behalf of the public. The member submitted the expense for reimbursement from the Educational Development Fund, which was negotiated as a part of the Union contract. Although the expense qualified for reimbursement, due to various factors, the request was denied by the Department of Administrative Services. With assistance from the Union and research by staff with the Member Resource Center, the member filed a grievance. The Department of Administrative Services then approved the reimbursement request.

• Member With The Department of Rehabilitation and Correction Successfully Appeals Fine. A member with the State of Ohio’s Department of Rehabilitation and Correction carried out a work assignment in good faith but was issued a 2-day fine for allegedly using poor judgement. The member contacted the Member Resource Center to file a grievance. As a result, the member successfully appealed the 2-day fine and the discipline will also expire a year early.

• State of Ohio Nurse Issued Overtime Opportunities After Grievance. A nurse with the State of Ohio was improperly passed over for overtime opportunities on more than one occasion. The member worked with their delegate to file a grievance. As a result of the grievance, the State of Ohio agreed to make the member whole for the lost overtime.

SEIU District 1199 Union Member Benefits Program
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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. SEIU Member Benefits has also partnered with Eastern Gateway Community College, which is a part of the University of Ohio System, to offer a free college benefit. 

Member Resource Center Update – State of Ohio Chapter

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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 Members

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SEIU District 1199 has joined as a partner with Columbia Southern University, Southern New Hampshire University, and Ohio’s Eastern Gateway Community College. Whether in-person or online, Ohio’s Eastern Gateway Community College offers a free college benefit for members and retirees, in addition to eligible family members. 

Columbia Southern University
 Southern New Hampshire University
• Ohio’s Eastern Gateway Community College

If you need assistance with your member benefits, you can always contact the Member Resource Center. “Your Member Resource Center has your back!”

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2019 Work & Wages Conference Recap

SEIU Members from District 1199 WV/KY/OH, Local 1 and the Chicago Regional Joint Board of Workers United joined over 100 people gathered in Cleveland for the “Which Side Are You On: Cleveland Work and Wages Conference” hosted by Policy Matters Ohio on Friday, August 23rd.

Lynn Radcliffe, SEIU District 1199 WV/KY/OH Retiree Executive Board Member, kicked off the conference telling the crowd that Unions for All is the best way to build an economy and a democracy that works for everyone.

“Our Union is out there every day fighting for better wages and working conditions for all workers,” said Radcliffe. “And that goes beyond the walls of our Union shops and pages of our contracts, we are also fighting for our community because we are the community.”

Lynn’s words were reverberated throughout the day with many speakers and panelists echoing our call for a minimum wage of $15 an hour and a union for all working people—Black, white, and brown—and to work together to hold politicians accountable.

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BrightSpring ResCare Bargaining Update and Member Newsletter

ResCare Bargaining Update 9.4.19
The Bargaining Committee and BrightSpring Members Stand United

We are stronger together. Over the last year, Union members with BrightSpring “ResCare” have stood together to win countless grievances, provide the best possible client care, and defend the contract.

We are also in the middle of a very important bargaining campaign – it is critical that we stand together and support the negotiating committee. We have already fought back successfully against proposed concessions from management in several areas. The member negotiating committee heads back to the table on October 1st and October 2nd to continue with economics, such as wages, insurance, mileage, and vacation time.

We need members to wear purple each Friday. Text photos of your work groups showing solidarity to Administrative Organizer Greg Haddox at (740) 606 – 0772.

Bargaining Update for BrightSpring “ResCare” Members

• The Union has proposed a living wage with a path to $15 and is holding firm.

• The Company has agreed to give the Union a 30-day notice if it intends to subcontract and provide the name and contact information for the subcontractor.

• The Union has rejected the company’s full economic package that only includes a $0.25 increase for Ohio workers and a 1% increase for West Virginia workers. The company has also proposed a starting rate of $9.15 an hour with benefits or $9.65 with PILOB. The Union still has increases for shift and  weekend differentials, and medication delegation, on the table.

• The Union fought back and maintained current language in regards to recognition.

• The Union won an increase in the time for Union orientation from 30 minutes to 1 hour.

• The Union fought back to maintain the 90 day probationary period. The employer wanted 180 days.

• The Union fought back and successfully maintained our health and safety language.

• The Union fought back to keep organizer access with 24 hour notice to facilities and 48 hour notice for meeting space at core offices.

• Wages and other economic benefits are on the table for the next session. Management wants to take away your legal right to file claims against them in court over civil rights, discrimination, and all other protected rights and wants you to grieve and arbitrate these issues. The Union is fighting back.

SEIU District 1199 Member Resource Center

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BrightSpring (“ResCare”) members with SEIU District 1199 work hard to provide quality care. Standing together, members regularly win back pay, advocate for quality care, and work to uphold the contract.

If you are having an issue at work and believe the contract is being violated, contact the Member Resource Center. Representatives with the Member Resource Center are standing by to assist. “Your Member Resource Center Has Your Back!”

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Grievance by Healthcare Member Results in Additional Staffing and Successful Outcome

Members with SEIU District 1199 often speak out about issues of concern on behalf of their co-workers and members of the public. Being a member of a Union means having a voice to speak out and stand with co-workers if needed.

A dedicated healthcare member with Fairmont Regional Medical Center in West Virginia had concerns about staffing levels for her unit. She contacted the Union and joined with a co-worker to file a grievance. As a direct result, hospital administrators took quick action and placed two additional job postings for positions with the unit. 

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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SEIU Members Endorse Levy for The Public Library of Youngstown & Mahoning County

This week, members of SEIU District 1199 voted to endorse renewing the library levy for the Public Library of Youngstown and Mahoning County. The levy will be on the November 2019 ballot and is needed to maintain services.

In 2018 alone, the Public Library of Youngstown and Mahoning County had 952,262 individual visits and staff answered 252,916 reference questions. This 5-year renewal levy would not increase taxes, as an existing 2.4 mill property tax levy is set to expire at the end of 2019. There has been a union presence with this library system for decades. 

Public libraries make our communities stronger. We are encouraging all local voters to support this levy renewal in November.  

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Protect Ohio’s Communities

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National Parole Officer’s Week: July 21st – 27th, 2019

On behalf of the nearly 26,000 members of SEIU District 1199 WV/KY/OH and the 2 million members of the Service Employees International Union, we want to thank you and recognize you for your exceptional service to our community.

President Becky Williams
Secretary-Treasurer Kathy McCormick
Executive Vice President Josh Norris

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Public Libraries Receive Funding Increase in State of Ohio Budget

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We are excited to announce that Ohio’s public libraries will see a vital increase in funding for the services that library workers provide to our communities. Congratulations to all library members and partner groups on this significant victory.

Through your advocacy, we were successful in preventing a previously enacted budgetary provision under the Kasich administration that would have reduced the Public Library Fund (PLF) to 1.66% of the General Revenue Fund (GRF). A new provision also increased the PLF by an additional 0.02% to 1.7% of GRF. Finally, language was included in the final budget to retroactively fund libraries and make them whole for the month of July at the 1.7% level. 

Thank you to all library workers, advocacy groups, and partners, who spoke out in support of increased funding for public libraries. We are stronger together. 

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State Chapter Delegate Trainings

Delegate Training

Delegate Training

Monday, August 12
10:00AM – 4:00PM

SEIU District 1199 Columbus Office
1395 Dublin Road, Columbus, OH 43215

This one-day training is designed for Delegates who have basic skills but need more in-depth information, including:

  • 7 Test of Just Cause for Discipline
  • Effective Investigatory Meeting Tips
  • Federal Rights as a State Employee
  • Differences in Mediations, Arbitrations and Non-Traditional Arbitrations (NTAs)
    Registration Deadline:
    July 29, 2019

Wednesday, August 28
10:00AM – 4:00PM

SEIU District 1199 Columbus Office
1395 Dublin Road, Columbus, OH 43215

This one-day training is designed for Delegates who have completed Intermediate Delegate Training, covering:

  • Public-Sector Labor Law
  • Strategies in Representation
  • Understand how to effective prepare for Mediations, Arbitrations and Non-Traditional Arbitrations (NTAs)
    Registration Deadline:
    August 14, 2019

Register Online Today
(You can register for both!)

Intermediate Delegate Training Registration

Advanced Delegate Training Registration

Once you have registered, your leave from work will be arranged by the Union and your wages for the day will be paid by the State.

Questions? Call The Member Resource Center: 877-419-7348

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