If bargaining were a track-and-field event, it would more resemble a marathon than a sprint. Actually, bargaining is more like a decathlon, because there are so many moving pieces.
The OHSU email sent around on Friday has generated a lot of buzz and discussion. Economic issues are perhaps the biggest challenge in bargaining a new contract. The economic proposals introduced last week will not be dealt with for several weeks, however. There are many other key issues important to members and your bargaining team is making progress on them in the immediate future. But we think it’s important to share with you the economic proposals that AFSCME Local 328 is proposing to OHSU. In the future, we’ll offer side-by-side comparisons of the OHSU and AFSCME Local 328 proposals, to help explain the differences.
OHSU is a world-class institution and we believe strongly that to recruit and retain the best workers, it must be a market leader, rather than a follower. OHSU is in a strong financial position in part because of the excellent work of AFSCME Local 328 members; OHSU has said as much in its own email. We understand that workers should be compensated and rewarded for the tremendous contribution they make to OHSU’s success.
We’ll be taking a close look at OHSU’s proposals and listening to feedback from our members. We’ll have comprehensive response when we return to the economic-proposals phase of bargaining.
In order to lead the market, we’ve presented the following to OHSU:
MAJOR ECONOMIC ISSUES
- Wages — four-year agreement with across-the-board increases as follows:
- July 2015 – 3.5%
- July 2016 – 3.5%July 2017 – 3.25%
- July 2018 – 3.25%
- Market-based adjustments –- benchmark OHSU wages against comparables at the 66th percentile instead of the 50th percentile — lead the market instead of following it
- Salaried employees – minimum 3% anniversary increase
VACATION & HOLIDAYS
- Paid holidays for relief employees
- Increase vacation for hourly employees to:
- 15 days 1st through 5th year
- 17 days after 5th year through 10th year
- 19 days after 10th year through 15th year
- No change above 15 years
- Establish a new vacation-accrual rate for salaried employees:
- 19 days 1st through 10th year
- 21 days after 10th year through 20th year
- 24 days after 20th year
- Increase premium payment by OHSU to 95%, up from 88%, for full time, and to 85%, up from 75%, for part time
- PERS –- continue transition plan until ratification, then pay current PERS employees 6% of their annual wage as lump-sum payment to end the transition (we may consider how to fold this into our counterproposal to OHSU’s UPP proposal in a way that brings more equity)
OTHER ECONOMIC ISSUES (in order of appearance in the contract)
- Union-president leave — do not count bargaining time against the contractually allowed union-president leave.
- The employer to hire a work-modification specialist in the AA/EEO department to develop accommodation requests and assist with injured-worker placement.
- Contracting out — redefine to include workers who lose their jobs as a result of partnerships, mergers and acquisitions; they would then be eligible for the enhanced severance package available to contracted-out workers.
- Clarify the minimum time off between scheduled shifts — we are not trying to change the economic benefit, just trying to make it more understandable
- Red-lining — employees who are downwardly reclassified, or whose pay scales are reduced due to market conditions, shall be red-lined and suffer no loss of pay.
- Meal or meal card worth $9 to be provided when the employee works two hours or more of overtime and was first notified of the overtime on the same day as the overtime.
- Add weekend day-shift differential for all workers at the rate of 5.5% of their hourly wage.
- Preceptor differential of $2 per hour.
- CMA differentials of $2 per hour for duties that require special training.
- Pharmacists –150% of full day’s pay for each extra shift worked above their normal full-time work week, prorated for partial shifts.
- Urgent leave — 8 hours to be taken in as little as 1-hour increments for urgent life events that are not covered by sick leave; e.g., broken plumbing, day-care problems.
- Active-duty military leave subsidy — provide the difference between military earnings and OHSU wages for OHSU employees deployed on active duty.
- Tuition discounts — we are proposing language to restore the prepayment instead of the current reimbursement model.
- Education and training — all employees must be trained in basic computer use and email use.
- Rate freeze — no increases during the term of the agreement.
- Extend night-shift grace period to 12 noon instead of 10:00 a.m.
- Parking-fee waiver for the first pay period in December for bargaining-unit employees.
- Increase funding for the Labor Management Committee and CWE Center.
- COBRA — in areas where COBRA funding is provided to employees, the union is proposing that the employee be given the choice between COBRA and the cash equivalent
- Community Pipeline — The union is proposing establishing a program of prequalifying community members for selected AFSCME positions. They would become eligible for these positions by receiving training from our community partners and working with a proposed additional staff person in the CWE Center. Positions would become available AFTER all the internal job bidding and hiring was complete but before regular external hiring commenced
- Parking resale — the union proposed that OHSU develop a way for employees who have paid for parking to sell unused parking days back to OHSU so that OHSU may resell those days when the employee will not be on campus.
As you can see, there is a lot for OHSU to respond to, and an opportunity for the union to look at OHSU’s proposals as well, before responding. We’d love to hear your comments on the blog, and on our Facebook page.