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WFSE: State employees reach tentative deal with 6% raises

wfseThe following is from the Washington Federation of State Employees, AFSCME Council 28:

(Sept. 14, 2016) — A tentative agreement was reached Tuesday on a new General Government contract for state employees that includes across-the-board raises of 6 percent over two years, holds the line on employees’ share of health insurance premiums, and brings more vacation leave to those covered by the WFSE/AFSCME General Government contract.

In total, it represents the largest compensation package since the start of full-scope collective bargaining in 2004. It would mean across-the-board raises of 6 percent over two years and other targeted pay adjustments. The package would go a long way to bringing real raises to some 30,000 state agency workers represented by the Washington Federation of State Employees/AFSCME Council 28.

InvestInWA-rally_front“This is a monumental agreement — it couldn’t have happened without the ideas from our members, their actions in every corner of the state and the major statement they made when they packed the rotunda of the State Capitol for the big rally Aug. 31,” said WFSE President Sue Henricksen. “Bargaining is an all-member process and now the governor and his team know when they stare across the bargaining table they see the faces of 30,000 dedicated workers who simply want a contract so they can afford to answer the call of public service.”

Under the health care article agreed to at the state employee coalition table Sept. 9, the employees’ share of health insurance premium costs remains at 15 percent, with no takeaways and an increased wellness incentive.

It also enacts a minimum wage standard so no member will make less than $12 an hour ever again.

It helps struggling state employee families and protects taxpayers by addressing the revolving door in state hiring so dedicated state employees can afford to answer the call of service.

The across-the-board raises also go to members under the tentative agreements already reached at Central Washington University, Eastern Washington University, Washington State University, and The Evergreen State College Classified Staff, where they agreed to “me-too” provisions to mirror whatever General Government got on across-the-board raises.

Bargaining continues at several other tables as of the time of this update, including the Community College Coalition, the University of Washington and Western Washington University. (Update: Tentative agreement reached last night at WWU.) Please support them as they fight for the best agreements for their members.


WFSE Executive Director Greg Devereux signs Health Care article tentative agreement on Sept. 9.

General Government members now must vote to accept or reject that tentative agreement. Information will be coming soon in the mail on the tentative agreement and the online ratification voting process. More details on the tentative agreement can be found online here.

The new two-year General Government Collective Bargaining Agreement would take effect July 1, 2017, and expire June 30, 2019.

The ratification vote must take place by Oct. 1. Online ratification information can be found here. It then goes to the governor’s budget office for inclusion in his budget request. The 2017 Legislature will vote up or down on funding. If they reject the funding, the contract will go back for renegotiation.

To ensure legislative ratification of our contract, is it important for all members to vote in the Nov. 8 General Election.

CHECK OUT THE UNION DIFFERENCE in Washington: higher wages, affordable health and dental care, job and retirement security.

FIND OUT HOW TO JOIN TOGETHER with your co-workers to negotiate for better wages, benefits, and a voice at work. Or go ahead and contact a union organizer today!