October brings full contract bargaining preparations for nearly all of Local 1994’s bargaining units.
“We don’t anticipate easy negotiations this go round,” said Local 1994 President Gino Renne. “Too many of our policy and decision makers are pushing for privatization of many of our public services. And that means they’ll use that against us at the bargaining table. We’ll need every member actively supporting the union to reach a favorable deal."
Renne pointed out that the economy still hasn’t reached full recovery and that counties are facing significant revenue shortfalls because of the Supreme Court's Wynne decision.
Local 1994 members are encouraged to apply to become part of the bargaining team.
“Fresh faces are very helpful on the bargaining team,” said Local 1994’s Growth and Strategic Planning Coordinator Amy Millar. “It shows management that more of our membership are interested and engaged in the process. Believe me, it makes a huge difference.”
Phillip Simmons, a first-time bargaining team member from the Housing Opportunities Commission, called his experience on the bargaining team “eye opening.”
“It was interesting to see how management viewed me, at first, especially since I plan to work there until retirement,” said Phillips. “To management, we don’t work enough, we aren’t entitled to the wage adjustments we were seeking. It was like they could only see mistakes that had been made. It was like they weren’t even listening. And then, when we got on their level, we got their attention.”
Phillips called his fellow bargaining team members “very professional.”