Our bargaining committee unanimously recommends a YES vote.
Below are questions and answers about a strike over Unfair Labor Practices:
- Why is our bargaining committee recommending that we vote yes for a strike? Our bargaining committees, made up of over 100 of our co-workers, have been negotiating for new union contracts since November. The companies have refused to agree to many of the same standards that janitors and security officers in other cities already receive. Instead of bargaining in good faith, in many cases the companies have stalled, proposed to move us backwards, and tried to intimidate our members. Our elected bargaining committee unanimously recommends a YES vote for a one to two day strike to stop these unfair labor practices.
- Who decides if we strike? We are a democratic union. The first step is the membership must vote to give authorization to our bargaining committee to call a strike. This membership vote is set for February 9th, see details below. If the membership votes yes, then the second step is the bargaining committee will decide if and when it is necessary to call a strike, and decide the date.
- Can I be fired for participating in a strike? It is our right to strike under Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act. It is illegal for our employer to replace us permanently, fire, or discipline us for participating in a strike over unfair labor practices.
- What should I do if my manager says we will loose our jobs if we strike or picket?It is illegal for your manager to threaten to fire or discipline you for striking or picketing. Please report any threats immediately to your steward or the union hall.
- Our Union contract expired on January 1st. Are we still protected by the union? Yes, we are still part of the union. Even though the contract has expired, by law, all of the wages, benefits and working conditions in our contract must remain the same until the bargaining process is completed. This means that we cannot be fired or disciplined unjustly. If your manager tries to cut your hours or change your working conditions, you must report it immediately to your steward or the union hall.
- Can I be disciplined for talking about the union or the strike?: No, it is illegal for your manager to discipline you or treat you differently for talking about the union or the strike. If you are allowed to discuss family matters or sports or the weather at work, then you can discuss the union.
- Have janitors or security officers struck before? Yes, Janitors across the country, including Chicago and Houston, struck and won major improvements. Five years ago in the Twin cities, security officers in the same buildings where we work went on a one day strike and won 50 cent raises. At the end of these strikes, the workers all came back to work and no one lost their job.