Published: February 10, 2023

On Wednesday, February 8th, our SEIU 503 central table bargaining team met with the state to deliver an opening statement and pass our initial economic proposals. (Most coalition bargaining delegates were also able to attend virtually as observers.) In our statement, led by our central table co-chairs Ibrahim Coulibaly and Austin Folnagy, and 503’s executive director, Melissa Unger, we began to lay out the case for why our upcoming union contract must reflect our union’s bargaining priorities: economic justice, safe and equitable workplaces, sustainable workloads, and union security.

The opening economic proposal we gave the state includes: 

  • 11% Cost-of-living adjustment effective July 1, 2023
  • 9% Cost-of-living adjustment effective July 1, 2024
  • No state worker is paid less than $22 an hour by the end of the contract
  • State pays our entire health insurance premium
  • $1 per hour differential for all in-person work
  • Longevity differentials for long-term employees
  • Adding Indigenous People’s Day as a paid holiday
  • Paid Leave Oregon premium fully paid by the state
  • Increasing vacation accruals

See the opening statement slide deck.

This is just the beginning of our negotiations, and we have a long way before our contract expires on June 30. In the coming weeks, our central table team will continue to review the thousands of survey responses members returned and will be making additional proposals to the state that deal with our non-economic bargaining priorities. Our coalition bargaining tables have begun meeting this week (ODOT on Feb. 9th, Institutions Feb. 14th, and Human Services and Specials Feb. 16th).​​​