The agreement includes a $10 minimum hourly wage that will help battle the county’s growing economic inequality. It also includes step increases, which workers have not had in nine years. Together, they should help the district attract more applicants to available job openings.
The union also won a key provision to limit the school board’s ability to outsource current and future jobs. AFSCME negotiators also were able to include language that will help stabilize health insurance costs, providing long-term certainty on a critical issue to both employees and the school board.
The ratification vote culminated months of intensive member-to-member outreach to learn about the workers’ priorities leading up to the negotiations. Local 1184 members also rallied and held other public events to explain why this contract matters. More than 100 workers joined the union during the ratification campaign.
“This is not just more of the same from us or from the school board,” said AFSCME Local 1184 Pres. Vicki Hall, a district school bus driver. “Thanks to our strong and united voice, this contract ensures that our jobs and rights are protected and that we are making real progress for our families and our communities.”