WellPower Bargaining

8/11/23 Bargaining Update:

Today we received counter proposals on Articles 17 (Job Descriptions and Performance Evaluations) and 22 (Subcontracting) and immediately responded with new counter proposals. Your bargaining team asked if WellPower was willing to change its position on Articles 2 (Non-Discrimination) and 4 (Union Representation) to which they responded they would not. This solidifies their position to minimize protections against discrimination, punish us for engaging in legal activities outside of work, and limit our ability to discuss workplace conditions with each other.

Your bargaining team has reviewed all 350+ bargaining survey responses and are making proposals according to your feedback. We do not feel that they are hearing your voice. To get all of our voices taken seriously, we need to take action together. We have prepared an email to Carl Clark and the Board Members of WellPower to express that we stand in solidarity as a union demanding that WellPower come to the bargaining table in good faith and respect the rights of workers. 

You and anyone who supports workers can click the following link to access the email message. All you do is enter your information and click send. Doing so will send the message to Carl Clark and the Board Members. Receiving an abundance of emails from workers and community members will show management that you will not compromise on your rights.

This action is protected and concerted union activity. This means that any retaliation for sending this email would be illegal. That includes, but is not limited to, being asked questions about your participation, comments meant to intimidate or threaten you, and discipline or unwarranted workplace changes. If you experience any of these, regardless of your participation in this action, do not answer any questions from management and contact a steward immediately.

If you have any questions about the issues please contact a union leader (bargaining team member, steward, Communication and Action Team member) or attend the monthly meetings every first Thursday of the month 11-1pm.

8/7/23 Bargaining Update:

Today at the bargaining table we heard management’s counter proposals on Article 2 (Non-Discrimination) and Article 4 (Union Representation). Management expressed an unwillingness to collaborate further on these articles, stating that their position was “Final.”

Today’s counter proposal from management on Article 2 showed willingness to maintain some of the existing protections in our contract (in contrast to their prior counterproposal), but reiterated their unwillingness to add protections to our contract that go above the law. Management also sought to eliminate protections for staff engaging in lawful activities outside the workplace, implying that they have a right to know what you do in your private life.

In their counter proposal on Article 4, management seems to be taking aggressive steps to dismantle and undermine your ability to communicate and coordinate with your coworkers, union representatives, and stewards regarding working conditions, including staff safety, workloads, and quality of care.

We have not yet heard responses to our other 15 proposals.

We will be meeting with management again on Wednesday and will provide an additional update at that time. Please look out for our update on Wednesday and a possible call to action.

8/3/23 Bargaining Update:

Since our first bargaining session on April 25th, we have had eight total meetings with WellPower Management. Your bargaining team has made the first proposals on eighteen different articles of your contract. Management has not made any first proposals, and we have only received responses from management on two of our proposals, the Preamble and Article 2 (Non-Discrimination). We have reached a Tentative Agreement on the Preamble, which defines mission statements for both parties. 

Article 2 currently provides us with protections from discrimination by management above and beyond what is required by law. Historically, management has actively proposed changes to the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) that increase protections for staff, consistent with the agency’s public messaging around anti-discrimination. In a Teams post by Dr. Carl Clark on June 30, 2023, in response to recent Supreme Court rulings on affirmative action and discrimination against the LGBTQ+ communities, he reaffirms “WellPower will always be a place that is inclusive to all, and we continue to work to create and protect spaces where everyone is celebrated for who they are.” In contrast to Dr. Clark’s message, management’s counter-proposal on Article 2 rolls back existing protections for bargaining unit members and implies that discrimination that is not explicitly illegal is condoned by the agency. 

At this time, the bargaining team has submitted proposals to management on every article in your CBA that does not impact pay or benefits. We would like to reach an agreement on these proposals with confidence that your rights as workers are protected so that we can begin discussions of pay and benefits.

Your bargaining team will be meeting with management twice next week. It is our hope that management comes prepared with a contribution to bargaining that does not undermine or decrease the rights of employees. In the event that they do not, the bargaining team will be asking you to take action for yourselves, your coworkers, and the people you serve.

7/25/23 Bargaining Update:

WellPower and SEIU Local 105 met and reviewed Articles 1 and 14. SEIU Local 105 submitted a counter for Article 2. We aligned on continued bargaining dates up to Nov 1st and remain optimistic as negotiations continue.

7/20/23 Bargaining Update

On Tuesday WellPower and the SEIU local 105 bargaining team met and management passed a counter proposal on Article 2. The parties continue to move forward in negotiations.

7/11/23 Bargaining Update

Your coworkers on the bargaining team met with management yesterday and continued bargaining by passing their proposal on article 4 of the contract which covers Union Representation. They’re now waiting for management’s replies on Articles 2 and 4.

6/7/23 Bargaining Update

SEIU Local 105 Union Bargaining Committee and WellPower Leadership met on June 7, 2023 for our second session. We set group norms and expectations for the remainder of bargaining and scheduled bargaining dates through August. Our next meeting is scheduled for June 27. We are hoping to schedule remaining bargaining sessions for the fall at that time. We are optimistic that we will continue to have a collaborative bargaining process. SEIU Local 105 Union Bargaining Committee and WellPower Leadership will continue to provide updates as we progress.

Bargaining Session Number #1!

We are pleased to announce that management and your elected bargaining committee have met for their first bargaining session. It’s a great sign of partnership that management has been willing to meet so early.

Issues discussed…

  • Federal Mediation Conciliation Services (FMCS) representative provided a description of different methods for the process of negotiations such as Interest Based Bargaining (IBB), Traditional bargaining, the use of a facilitator or a mediator.
  • WellPower’s insurance broker, Lockton, presented the current state of your healthcare, dental, and vision.
  • Keith, your organizer, presented the basics of understanding union membership and inclusion in the collective bargaining agreement (CBA/Contract), as well as the nature of the bargaining unit.
  • A presentation by representatives from the Education Fund (EdFund) regarding matters related to the option to enroll in the program to better fund continuing education for members.
  • Both parties talked about scheduling and next steps of future sessions.

WellPower members are fighting for a strong contract! See below for YOUR bargaining team, and stay tuned for future bargaining updates!

  • Jade Werner
  • Cassandra Garcia
  • Melissa Forrow
  • Julie Perlin
  • Sasha Neal
  • Matt Lescroart