The Marion County bargaining team has reached a tentative agreement (TA) with the county after a second marathon bargaining session which stretched on to almost midnight on Thursday, 4/28! A few of the highlights of the TA include:
- 10% across-the-board cost of living increases (5% on July 1, 2022, and 5% on July 1, 2023)
- $1,500 pandemic recognition bonus for all regular, current employees who worked during the pandemic
- Juneteenth added as a paid holiday
- A new Letter of Agreement on workload prioritization
- Strengthening flexible scheduling contract language
- Improved health insurance contributions from the county
When bargaining first started, the team was discouraged by how far their proposals were from management’s. They realized it was necessary to take stock of what the priorities were and how they were going to activate their fellow workers to move management towards settling a fair contract. Trish Straw came off the job to work full time on the bargaining campaign and led the effort to recruit a robust Contract Action Team (CAT) and even activated new stewards while visiting multiple County worksites.
This agreement was won due to the collective action of members across the County, who made it clear to management that they would not settle for a weak contract while the County Commissioners had voted themselves a 22% pay increase over the past 6 years! Key to the effort was the tenacious Marion County bargaining team: Trish Straw, Kristina Ballow, Diana Downs, Eden Farias, Diana Dickey, Michelle Roberts, and Jonathan Sanford. If you get a chance, give them some kudos for the great work on a new contract.