Published: July 8, 2022

MCEA Ratifies Their Contract with Huge Gains for Members!

After several years of Marion County Commissioners demoralizing workers and not agreeing to COLAs beyond 2%, we went into bargaining knowing we had an uphill battle and needed to run a strong campaign. With nearly 600 workers signing on to our petition for a fair contract, we settled a historic contract with a 5% COLA that was implemented on July 1st and another 5% COLA a year from now, a $1,500 pandemic recognition payment, a $25 increase to the County’s contribution for the workers’ health insurance each year and much, much more. Since this settlement, we have recruited 41 new members. The contract was ratified with a 98% yes vote.

“Winning a great union contract doesn’t begin or end at the bargaining table; it takes a lot of preparation, collaboration, and participation,” said LaTricia Straw, sublocal president. “It takes dedication. Without member participation we can’t win a good contract – that means filling out bargaining surveys, sharing information with your coworkers in your worksites, attending meetings, supporting actions – everything that makes it happen.

“WE won this historical contract because WE all worked together!”

Jackson County Workers Ratify Strong Contract 

Jackson County SEIU 503 ratified a new contract that includes strong COLA increases, keeps health care costs and coverage the same, adds Juneteenth as a paid holiday, and more. This contract would not have been possible without the contributions of our member leaders on the bargaining team, who were laser focused on winning the best contract possible.

The details on the contract can be found by clicking here.

Now Recruiting for Our Next Member Leader Development Program Wave

It’s that time again! We’re recruiting leaders from across the public sector to participate in the Member Leader Development Program (MLDP), and we need your help. Are you interested in building power in the workplace? Please apply by July 22nd, 2022! 
The Member Leader Development Program was created to bring members into the heart of SEIU operations and provide them with training and resources to be leaders in their local Unions. 
What do MLDP’s do?

  • Learn to have effective 1-on-1 conversations, including telling their union story effectively.
  • Build skills in talking with workers about our power, and how it impacts our strength in the workplace and at the bargaining table.
  • Learn best practices for engaging workers in organizing campaigns.

Anyone who works for a State Agency or in Higher Education (UofO, DHS, ODOT, OSU etc) can be in this MLDP, and a goal of this program is that participants are a reflection of our overall membership. All someone has to do is apply, be accepted, and then approved by their employer.

Apply Here!

Nominations for SEIU 503 Union Elections are Now Open!

Nominations for Statewide Officers (SWO) and the Board of Directors (BOD) for SEIU 503 are open until August 5th, 2022.

We encourage members to become active in your Union! You are what gives our Union power and the strength to win good contracts for the 72,000 workers across Oregon who are part of SEIU 503.

You may nominate any member or yourself. To run for office or vote, you must be an eligible member under the Union’s Bylaws by the time nominations close on August 5th. Read more here.

Going UP, UP, UP: Oregon’s Minimum Wage Rises

As of July 1st, Oregon’s minimum wage is up for workers across the state, with increases depending on where people live. For nonurban counties, the wage is up 50 cents to $12.50; for Jackson and Josephine Counties, up 75 cents to $13.50 and from $14 to $14.75 in the Portland metro area.

These wage increases are the sixth in six years, thanks to the hard-fought efforts of unions – such as SEIU 503 and our partners – in Oregon who know workers deserve to earn more for their labor. This is not where the wage hikes end, however; beginning next year, Oregon minimum wage rates will be indexed to inflation based on the national Consumer Price Index.

It’s July 8th: Do You Know if Your Voter Registration is Current?

The general election is Tuesday, November 8th. While that seems like a long way away, we are all so busy with work, our families and other commitments that we sometimes forget to check important things until the last minute, such as “Did I remember to pay the electric bill?” “I forgot to get milk at the store!” or “Is my voter registration current?”

Since ballots are sent by mail, it’s important to check that your mailing address is current and that your party affiliation reflects what you want by clicking here.
And if you recently became eligible to vote, you can register online easily at this link.  

The deadline to register for the November election is Tuesday, October 18, 2022. Let’s all be ballot ready to elect union-friendly candidates into office this fall!

SEIU 503 Member Featured in Climate, Jobs, Justice Newsletter

SEIU 503 Climate Justice Committee Co-Chair Lois Yoshishige was featured in the latest edition of SEIU’s Climate Jobs, Justice newsletter. Lois’s blog post reflecting on April’s international Climate, Jobs, Justice summit was shared with SEIU members across the globe. Click here to read about Lois’s experience as well as learn more about climate justice work being done by SEIU members across our union.

Join us by taking an active role in bargaining – submit your interest below:

Get Involved Today!