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Tag: Washington Federation of State Employees

June
24th

State workers in ‘wait-and-see’ mode as layoff warnings go out

As state employees began receiving notices Monday that they could be furloughed starting July 1, worry and uncertainty prevailed at many offices.

Some state workers remained optimistic that lawmakers would pass a budget in time to avoid any temporary layoffs, while others expressed frustration that the Legislature, which is in the middle of a second 30-day overtime session to finalize a two-year spending plan, still hadn’t completed its work.

Should lawmakers fail to pass a budget before June 30, a government shutdown will begin July 1, completely closing 34 state offices and partially shutting down 24 others, state officials said last

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June
15th

State officials telling labor unions that July 10 paychecks will go out – even in a government shutdown

Gov. Jay Inslee’s budget office and lobbying team are working to win a budget deal in the Legislature that prevents a government shut down on July 1. But if no budget jells and a shutdown ensues on July 1, paychecks based on work done in June should go out to employees on July 10 as usual, unions say they are being told.

Several labor groups were briefed by Office of Financial Management director David Schumacher on Thursday and Friday, and they reported that OFM’s team  made clear the July 10 pay date will be honored. Money would come from taxes collected

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June
12th

UPDATE: Evergreen student-support workers ratify first-ever contract; includes grievance process, 1 percent pay bonus on July 1

UPDATE: The Evergreen State College has clarified details of the contract and issued a statement from college president Les Purce.

ORIGINAL June 12 POST: Members of a new labor union at The Evergreen State College ratified their first-ever contract Wednesday on a 52-2 vote, according to the Washington Federation of State Employees. The federation is the umbrella organization for the more than 55-member Evergreen Student Support Services Staff Union, which went on strike for one day last month after failing to strike a deal after 17 months. 

The federation put out a statement to its members that

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June
6th

Workers say they reached tentative contract deal with Evergreen college administration

Workers who went on a one-day strike last month over failed contract talks at The Evergreen State College have reported reaching a tentative agreement with the four-year liberal-arts school near Olympia. Neither the college nor workers were revealing details but a ratification vote for the 57 union members is set for June 12.

The parties had been in mediation before and after the May 27 strike – with major differences on the college offer of pay increases and rules governing discipline and “just cause” firings. Our last story on the dispute – touching on the college decision to cancel an

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June
5th

CLARIFIED – House budget plan says no thanks to Senate proposal putting part-time workers into Obamacare exchange for health coverage

House Democrats’ latest budget proposal gives in to Senate Republicans on many spending and tax questions, but it holds firm its opposition to the Senate’s plan to shift  part-time school or state employees into the health exchange being opened next year via Obamacare. Washington appears to be the first state to seriously consider the concept as a budget-saving tool.

Rep. Ross Hunter, the Medina Democrat who chairs the budget-writing Appropriations Committee, said the proposal included in the Senate Majority Coalition Caucus budget has problems. It assumes some $127.2 million in savings from giving part time workers a $2 an

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May
30th

UPDATE – Strikers back to work but Evergreen says labor action forces postponement of ‘Return to Evergreen’ event planned Saturday

Update: Our print version of this post  is here.

An ongoing labor dispute between The Evergreen State College leaders and a union representing 57 student-support services workers is still at a virtual impasse, and the college announced it is postponing Saturday’s “Return to Evergreen” gathering of alumni out of worry about disruptions from workers.

In the meantime, the parties report they are getting back into mediation under the guidance of the Public Employment Relations Commission, a state agency, after a one-day walk-out. The workers who include residence advisers, counselors and coaches walked off

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May
22nd

Evergreen college labor talks now in mediation; Tuesday strike looking more likely


Greg Devereux of the Washington Federation of State Employees / 2010 file photo by Olympian photographer  Steve Bloom

Negotiators for a fledgling support-services union failed to reach agreement and administrators at The Evergreen State College in their final bargaining talks this week, and a two-hour mediation session also did not bear fruit Wednesday. With a date set Tuesday for a possible strike, Student Support Services Staff Union leaders say they still hope to work out a two-year agreement in a second day of mediation planned Thursday.

State workers in Washington “do not have a legally protected

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May
15th

UPDATE – Evergreen State College bargaining unit votes overwhelmingly to OK strike option in ongoing contract talks

UPDATE: Student-services workers at The Evergreen State College  voted 45 to 5 today to authorize actions “up to and including a strike” this afternoon. The overwhelming vote does not mean a strike will happen, but it will be an option for the employees as they continue to bargain with the administration over pay and disciplinary issues at the four-year school.

The affected workers include counselors and academic advisers.

ORIGINAL POST: About 55 student-services employees seeking a first-time labor contract at The Evergreen State College were voting today on whether to authorize a strike or other job actions, while their ongoing

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