From the Desk of Local 1000 Board Chair Bill Hall
While still working on our statewide DLC Tour, I have our report of the week’s events at SEIU Local 1000. I have been out at worksite locations across the state, listening to your stories, problems in your worksites, and the expectations you have for our next contract agreement.
- The Vice Presidents and I were visiting worksites again this
week working with local DLC Leadership and Stewards to build
membership in Local 1000.
- Congratulations are due to Vice President for Organizing /
Representation Anica Walls, who, with the help of staff, was the
leader in non-member sign ups for the week!
- More events are planned to continue over the next three weeks as we make our way to worksites in the Bay and Northern California.
- As part of our plans for the future, we are evaluating new strategies for communications and politics. Our goal is to make sure that SEIU Local 1000 members are able to stay updated and get involved as bargaining gets nearer, and that we can build on the work we’re doing now to mobilize members during bargaining.
SEIU Local 1000 Delegation in Norway
- In this year’s state budget, Governor Gavin Newsom proposed
closing three California prisons during the next three years. The
Newsom Administration closed one state prison — Deuel Vocational
Institution in Tracy — last year, and has been trying to shut a
second, California Correctional Institution in Susanville, but
its closure is tied up in court.
- These planned closures will affect thousands of SEIU Local
1000 members. We remain committed to opposing these closures to
protect these critical union jobs.
- Part of our strategy for protecting these jobs is
understanding the best practices in corrections and adapting to
prison reforms that are being advanced by the Governor and
Legislature. This knowledge helps us effectively negotiate with
the administration and protect our members.
- Like many other unions across the nation, we have teamed
with One Voice United. This organization is dedicated to
giving union members in correctional institutions a voice in
national conversations about corrections and the criminal justice
system. It is an organization founded by union members for union
members, chaired by Andy Potter, who is also the Chair of the
SEIU National Corrections Council.
- This month, a delegation of SEIU Local 1000 members were
invited to participate in a working trip to Norway to understand
how that nation’s world-renowned correctional system works. The
goal: to better equip our union employees to deal with reforms we
will likely see here in California, and to give us a seat at the
reform table so we can shape proposals that affect our workers.
Our delegation includes: VP for Organizing / Representation Anica
Walls; VP of Bargaining Irene Green; BU 20 Chair Melissa
Vartanian; BU 17 Vice Chair Mary Naidoo; and BU 15 Chair Eric
Murray. These members are joining other SEIU delegations that
represent corrections staff from Colorado, Connecticut, New
Hampshire, and other Corrections unions outside SEIU.
- The trip includes briefings on the history of the Norwegian system, two prison tours, discussing our state’s reform proposals with international experts, and a visit to a corrections employees training academy. Our delegation will be hosted by the union leaders of Norwegian correctional facilities. There will be a film made about the trip, which we will make available to all SEIU Local 1000 members so we all can also learn about this cutting-edge correctional system.
- There is no cost to SEIU Local 1000 for our delegation’s
participation. The trip is entirely paid for by One Voice United,
including hotels, transportation, airfares, and all business
- We are sharing this information with you to be transparent about our operations and the activities of your union’s leadership, and are continually working to improve our efforts to bring these matters to your attention on a timely basis.
Finally, I have a correction from my letter last week. Classifications are an important part of our structure with bargaining. Our members who are LVN’s do some work that is similar and overlaps that of Psychiatric Techs, and the Pharmacy Tech’s do some work that is similar and overlaps as well. In fact, many of our classifications have similar or overlapping duties.
Thank you for your support as we build membership and engage with issues in worksites across the state. I look forward to seeing many of you while we continue to make our visits on the DLC Membership Tour!
William (Bill) Hall
Board Chair, SEIU Local 1000