BULLETIN: Strike vote possible at The Evergreen State College




Eberhart applauds allies who packed the TESC Board of Trustees meeting.

Eberhardt applauds allies who packed the TESC Board of Trustees meeting.

The members of the Student Support Services Staff Union at The Evergreen State College in Olympia have asked the Federation Executive Board to authorize a vote for job actions up to and including a strike.

This after 16 months of contentious bargaining over just cause and compensation.

The members this afternoon (May 8) presented a petition signed by 76 percent of the bargaining unit to the TESC Board of Trustees in Olympia. That number is significant because Federation strike vote rules require 66 percent to call a strike – a threshold the members could achieve. The unit has about 55 members.

Bargaining Team member Courtney Bailey gathers members and allies before marching on the TESC trustees.

Bargaining Team member Courtney Bailey gathers members and allies before marching on the TESC trustees.

“They will soon request your (Executive Board) approval for job actions up to and including strike authorization,” Federation President Carol Dotlich wrote on her recent blog post. “We must be prepared to move quickly through our internal process in order to support them fully.”

Eberhart

Eberhardt

“We feel we have been pushed to a hard spot,” Bargaining Team member Jean Eberhardt told the trustees.

Representatives of the campus faculty union, food services union, students and the Federation-represented classified employees, joined the members.

Stine

Stine of the student coalition.

Mikaela Stine of the student coalition called the Evergreen Staff Solidarity Coalition said “if strike activity occurs on campus, the members of our coalition will do everything within our power to contact as many students as possible to ensure that they refrain from crossing picketing lines or attending any classes on campus.”

The student coalition would also contact alumni and parents to expose the “unacceptable treatment” of the workers, who include counselors, advisors, coaches and others.

Fleming of the ILWU.

Fleming of the ILWU.

Stine presented letters of support for the Student  Support Services Staff, along with Laurie Meeker of the United Faculty union and Bill Fleming of ILWU Local 5 (which represents campus food service workers).

Seip of the WFSE/AFSCME Classified Employees speaks to trustees while Meeker of the faculty union looks on.

Seip of the WFSE/AFSCME Classified Employees speaks to trustees while Meeker of the faculty union looks on.

“I encourage you to move forward and negotiate in good faith for a fair contract,” said Susie Seip, a Local 443 TESC Classified Staff member.

If the Federation board authorizes the vote for actions up to and including a strike, it would be the first such sanction since the union’s successful statewide strike in 2001.

The trustees were urged to respect the Student Services Support Staff Union's call for just cause protections and fair compensation in their first contract. Negotiations have dragged on for 16 months.

The trustees were urged to respect the Student Support Services Staff Union’s call for just cause protections and fair compensation in their first contract. Negotiations have dragged on for 16 months.

Services

Services

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