The hard work our new leadership put in to get back to the negotiating table with the State paid off as we finalized a telework agreement late on April 27. Our focus now shifts to securing an equally impactful Essential Worker Premium Pay (EWPP) agreement for our members.

The crucial role played by the bargaining team and their commitment to negotiating and securing a telework side letter agreement that ensures state workers have a voice in the ability to telework cannot be overlooked.  This includes delivering an agreement that contains rights unmatched by any other state employee union, such as a commitment by the State not to modify an employee’s telework agreement without prior notice, and a Joint Labor Management Committee (JLMC) dedicated to resolving telework implementation issues in real-time. 

“Securing both a telework and an essential worker premium pay agreement are vitally important to our members,” said SEIU Local 1000 Board Chair Bill Hall. “As it concerns the former, our focus from day one was for workers to safely and comfortably do their jobs without interference from management or being subject to arbitrary return-to-office dictates. Now that we have a telework agreement in place, we’re working with the State to finalize dates on when we can get back to the table to discuss EWPP.”

According to the telework stipend program, employees identified as Remote Centered with an approved telework agreement will receive $50/month, while employees identified as Office Centered with an approved telework agreement will receive $25/month. Incidental telework does not qualify for the stipend. The stipend will also be retroactive to January 1, 2022. You can read the complete side letter agreement here.

The bargaining team is likewise committed to ensuring the best essential worker premium pay agreement possible is realized for all State Workers. The team anticipates beginning that work in the coming weeks. 

“Essential Worker Premium Pay represents rightfully earned compensation for all those that provided essential worker services, whether remotely or in-person, throughout the course of the Covid pandemic,” continued Hall. “Much as they’ve done in the past, Local 1000 workers stepped up and led the way in fighting to enforce safe working conditions on the job, reduce the risk of exposure to communities across California, and keep the 5th largest economy in the world running strong—all while working under these challenging conditions.”

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