SACRAMENTO, Calif. Nov. 22, 2016– SEIU Local 1000 members gave the state notice today that they will strike on Monday, Dec. 5 in protest of the state’s unlawful conduct and egregious unfair labor practices during contract bargaining.
Local 1000 has been bargaining in good faith with the state since April 2016. Although both parties have reached tentative agreement on many items, the state has inexplicably failed to budge from its opening proposal regarding salary and benefits for state workers in more than seven months of bargaining.
State negotiators failed to adequately respond when Local 1000 confronted them with examples of their bad faith conduct at and away from the table, except to threaten regressive bargaining if the union does not accept its opening proposal on salary and benefits. The state has also failed to provide any response to the communicated concerns of the union regarding:
- The October 2016 CalHR report on gender pay inequities in state employment
- The state’s unilateral approach to civil service reform
- The state’s unilateral change during bargaining in the method for calculating health care cost-sharing, which will result in a shift of $20 million in health care costs to our members
Local 1000 is not legally required to give the state any notice of a strike.
“We are giving notice out of concern for our families and the communities we serve,” said Local 1000 President Yvonne R. Walker. “The state has provided no explanation or justification for its unlawful conduct and it is our duty and responsibility to hold them accountable.”
In November, the members who voted authorized a strike by an overwhelming 92%.
California is now the sixth largest economy in the world, according to the International Monetary Fund, and has a budget reserve of $11.5 billion and is recession-proof beyond June 2021, according to the independent Legislative Analyst’s Office 2017-2018 budget projection.
Yet state workers who provide valuable services to all California families still face gender pay inequity.
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- Local 1000 members are predominately women (66%), yet they are paid 19% less than the average for all rank-and-file state employees combined, according to the State Controller’s Office September 2016 data
- The state has made deals with male-dominated state employee groups that include wages 43% higher than Local 1000 members
- A staggering 39% of Local 1000 members cannot afford a two-bedroom apartment in the county they live in
- In most parts of the state, Local 1000 members cannot afford childcare
- In more than seven months of bargaining, the state’s only salary proposal has been 2.96% per year, and demands a 3.5% giveback mandating employee contributions to retiree health care and a reduction of retiree health benefits for new hires
“California must be a leader of good faith and equity,” said Walker. “Local 1000 members provide valuable services to all Californians each day. The state’s unlawful conduct only widens the gender pay gap for California families.”
About Local 1000
SEIU Local 1000, the largest public sector union in California, represents 95,000 state workers, including nurses, teachers, librarians, custodians, IT analysts, inspectors, and more.
We represent state employees in 9 of 21 state bargaining units. Our members provide vital services to all Californians, working in virtually every one of 300-plus state agencies, in more than 1,400 worksites across California, Texas, New York, Chicago and Hawaii.