CONTRACTS

Brooklyn Botanic Garden Worker Wins Wage Hike and Back Pay

August 14, 2019 // 0 Comments

By DIANE S. WILLIAMS After eight months of labor-management meetings, DC 37 Local 374 has won a wage hike that adds about $1,400 to the annual salary of a Brooklyn Botanic Garden employee. “I love this job and everyone who knows me knows that I love what I do,” said Claudia Navas, a Clerical 4 project coordinator who spreads the message that composting is good for the environment, leads workshops and offers technical advice. A team player, Navas shoulders extra responsibilities to help out when Brooklyn Botanic Garden is short-staffed. But when she asked to be compensated for her hard work, she unearthed a problem only her union could resolve. “I was surprised to learn that although I am the most senior employee, as a Clerical 4, I earned $1,285 less than my colleagues, who are all senior museum instructors. So I called my union,” Navas said. White Collar Division Council Rep [More...]

Contract Fight of Westchester County Day-Care Workers Heats Up

August 12, 2019 // 0 Comments

By GREGORY N. HEIRES About 40 day-care center workers in Westchester County staged a one-day strike on Thursday, protesting years of frozen pay and their employer’s most recent outrage, a failure to repair a summertime breakdown of the air conditioning system. “Enough is enough,” said Kim Medina, deputy administrator of District Council 1707, which represents day-care workers Local 205 and will unify with District Council 37 in September. “Because of management’s failure to negotiate seriously, our members are struggling to meet their daily expenses,” Medina, who will become the special assistant to the executive director for the new Non-Profit and Private Sector Division of District Council when the unification of the two councils occurs. “The agency’s failure to address the scorching working conditions is only the latest abuse.” The parents of infants and toddlers [More...]

Day-Care Educators Win Pay Equity with City Teachers

August 6, 2019 // 0 Comments

  By GREGORY N. HEIRES By more than a 3-to-1 margin, members of Local 205 — early childhood educators who work for non-profit organizations — voted for a contract extension that puts them on a path to wage parity with their counterparts at the New York City Dept. of Education. The contract extension covers more than 4,000 members of the local and is the first demonstration of how the recently-announced unification of District Council 1707 and District Council 37 can increase the bargaining and political power of New York City public and private sector workers. “This is an historic achievement — after decades of hard work, early childhood educators are being recognized as true professionals,” noted Kim Medina, the executive director of DC 1707 who now becomes special assistant to the executive director for the new Non-Profit and Private Sector Division of District Council [More...]

Moving UP Thanks to the Union’s Ed Fund: From Dietary Aide to Registered Nurse

July 15, 2019 // 0 Comments

By DIANE S. WILLIAMS A unique Education Fund program opened a door to life-altering opportunities for Dietary Aide Yolanda Jeter and other hospital workers to earn college degrees and acquire skills leading to jobs, promotions and better salaries. “I went to a Local 420 membership meeting and that’s where I learned about this incredible program,” said Jeter, a per diem worker at Susan McKinney nursing home since 2013. “Attending that union meeting changed my life.” What Jeter learned about is the Food and Nutrition Worker Education Fund program for dietary aides and other employees with union titles at NYC Health + Hospitals facilities who are supervised by Sodexo management. The program helps NYC H+H employees advance through higher education and certifications, providing up to $2,000 in annual tuition assistance and reimbursement for education, professional development and [More...]

Union Wins $70,000 in Owed Longevity for Pest Control Workers

July 8, 2019 // 0 Comments

By DIANE S. WILLIAMS Local 768 won a collective $70,000 in owed longevity payments for 35 City Pest Control Aides and Exterminators at the Dept. of Health and Mental Hygiene after forcing the agency to apply the contract’s recurring increment payments, or RIPs. “The union remains diligent in protecting members’ hard won wages and benefits, whether it means fighting over federal rollbacks on union rights or correcting the mistakes made by agency management,” said Local 768 President Fitz Reid. “If it impacts our members, we are here to make sure the contract and the members are respected.” Several CPCAs and Exterminators called the union after DOHMH failed to apply or took away the contractual RIPs they were entitled to. Longevity pay is disbursed incrementally in members’ biweekly paychecks. CPCAs do the dirty work that keeps New York City clean by enforcing health codes. [More...]

David Paskin, Union’s Long-Time Negotiator, Retires

June 30, 2019 // 0 Comments

By GREGORY N. HEIRES David Paskin, the union’s director of research and negotiations, has retired after working as a negotiator at DC 37 for 32 years. Paskin received a warm sendoff at union headquarters on June 17. Speakers praised Paskin for his honesty at the bargaining table and profound commitment to the fight for the dignity of workers. DC 37 Executive Director Henry Garrido appointed Paskin to head the department after the passing of Paskin’s predecessor Evelyn Seinfeld in 2016. Garrido said Paskin “stepped up like the hero he is” to help preserve the union’s bargaining strength. Over the past four years, Garrido and Paskin teamed up to usher the union through a deal for a new 44-month master contract with no givebacks, a multi-billion dollar agreement with the city that preserves the premium-free health-care of members, and a breakthrough of a seven-year logjam in an [More...]

Union Wins on New Full-Time Positions at H+H Facility

May 14, 2019 // 1 Comment

BY DIANE S. WILLIAMS In an ongoing fight to protect jobs and benefits, the union settled a group grievance to convert nine per diem, hourly and part-time workers at the Susan B. McKinney long-term care facility in Brooklyn to permanent, full-time positions. “These members were hired as part timers but management assigned extra hours and full time work schedules from day one without full time benefits or the opportunity to become full time NYC Health+Hospital employees,” said Local 420 President Carmen Charles, who represents the eight Patient Care Technicians and one Housekeeper the union filed the group claim for. “To add insult to injury,” Charles said, “McKinney management would hire new people off the street as full-time employees, without considering these workers who were already on staff.” “Many of the workers felt they were overlooked because the nursing director [More...]

Union to CUNY: Do the Right Thing, Pay Workers Now!

May 8, 2019 // 0 Comments

By MIKE LEE Workers at City University of New York are outraged that, despite having reached a quick economic agreement with the city in November 2018 and voting overwhelmingly to ratify that contract the following month, they have yet to receive their pay increase and retroactive pay. Citing unforeseen technical problems in their accounting systems, the university system has failed to issue checks that reflect the new terms of the contract. The union is pushing the university hard to resolve this issue, and union activists joined local presidents to speak out before CUNY’s Board of Trustees at LaGuardia Community College on April 30. “Our members our loyal employees who work hard. Way back in December we ratified a contract with you,” Local 2627 President Laura Morand told the trustees. “You have failed to keep up your end of the contract. Why must we wait so long to get what [More...]

Union wins promotion, $12,000 pay hike and $8,000 in back pay for OCME scientist

May 1, 2019 // 0 Comments

By DIANE S. WILLIAMS The union helped a forensic scientist at the Office of the City Medical Examiner win over $8,000 in owed back pay, and a promotion with a $12,000 annual pay bump after settling an out-of-title grievance at Step 2. OCME managers assigned the Local 3005 Criminalist Level 3 supervisory duties of signing timesheets, preparing work orders, scheduling assignments and reviewing other Criminalists’ work. The member asked that PEP not print her name. OCME forensic scientists staff the country’s most advanced toxicology and biology laboratories and the nation’s only molecular genetics laboratory housed in a medical examiner’s office. The scientists upload DNA samples into CODIS, the combined index system of DNA samples that span local, state and federal databases. As experts in mass fatality management, they are called on to share their expertise in responding to [More...]

Become a Wellness Champion: Free Classes and Programs for DC 37 Members

April 22, 2019 // 0 Comments

Did you know FREE Exercise Classes and FREE Smoking Cessation Programs are available at your city agency work location? These and many other valuable programs are available through WorkWell NYC to help you get and stay healthy. When DC 37 and other municipal employee unions negotiated improvements to your health insurance benefits, we placed an emphasis on prevention in order to avoid high hospital costs. High insurance costs limit our ability to negotiate for better raises and working conditions. It’s in all of our interests to get healthy so we can get a little bit more wealthy! Workshops include healthy eating, pre-diabetes support, mindfulness and stress reduction, and even financial planning, since money worries lead to health worries. Worksite fitness classes cover all levels of activity from Chair Yoga to Zumba. It’s a fun way to spend your lunch hour and to interact with [More...]