CWA NJ EXECUTIVE BRANCH BARGAINING UPDATE | FEBRUARY 6, 2018

Brothers and Sisters,

Before the election in November, the State had provided a list of bargaining proposals to CWA which would have rolled back several sections of the contract, including PARs, removed workplace dignity from the contract, and other issues. We discussed many of these bogus proposals in previous bargaining updates.

As you know, Governor Murphy took office January 16. Both CWA and the State have acted quickly since that time to get negotiations back on track and to clear roadblocks the Christie administration left in our path. CWA’s top priorities for our state executive branch membership are to settle our long-expired contract and resolve the dispute over stalled increments as quickly as possible.

Here is what we have done so far:

     1. Christie’s challenge at PERC to block our increment grievance was removed from PERC’s agenda.

After the NJ Supreme Court ruled that increment grievances were arbitrable, Christie filed a petition with his hand-picked PERC Commission asking to block our grievance and arbitration. Governor Murphy and CWA jointly requested that Christie’s challenge be removed from PERC’s January 25 meeting agenda. That request was granted.

 2. CWA Is Acting Quickly to Open Contract Negotiations with the New Administration

We are setting up formal bargaining dates and the Governor is replacing Christie’s bargaining team with new representatives. We will bargain strongly but quickly because the issues are well-known after three years working without a contract.

3. Critical Appointments are Moving Forward.

Replacements are progressing for the Public Employment Relations Commission, the Governor’s Office of Employee Relations, and the Civil Service Commission. PERC oversees arbitration and contract disputes. OER oversees state-wide labor relations issues and the CWA-State contract. The CSC oversees testing, seniority rules, classification and desk audits, hours of work, disciplinary appeals, and other important work rules that affect us every day.

4. In addition, the Murphy Administration has notified the Civil Service Commission to cease its effort to change rules on overtime. The Christie CSC had proposed changes to OT rules that would exclude any benefit leave time from OT calculation and would make it harder for employees to qualify for FMLA.

By illegally stopping the payment of our increments, Governor Christie created a legal and financial mess for our members and for the new Governor. That mess has to be untangled. CWA members are rightfully anxious to receive what we earned and are due under prior contracts, but we are encouraged by the initial steps taken by the new Governor to quickly resolve our outstanding contract negotiations.

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2018 Scholarship Opportunities for CWA Members

ScholarshipsAre you or a family member attending college next Fall? If so, you don’t want to miss out on any of these scholarship opportunities offered by our partners in the Labor Movement! If you or one of your children are attending or planning to attend a college, a university or a technical school, you may be eligible for one of these scholarships.

Please check back here as we will add more scholarship opportunities as they become available.

  • Applications for the Monmouth and Ocean County Central Labor Council Scholarship are due April 3, 2018. Click here to download the application.
  • Applications for the Essex-West Hudson Central Labor Council Scholarship are due April 16, 2018. Click here to download the application.
  • Information about CWA’s Beirne Foundation scholarship is available here. The deadline for applications is April 30, 2018.
  • Information about Union Plus Scholarships can be found here. The deadline for this application is January 31, 2018.

 

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CWA 1037 Joins the 2018 Women’s March on NJ

Join your union sisters and brothers from CWA Local 1037 as we march in solidarity with the Women’s March on New Jersey in Morristown on Saturday, January 20th, 2018. CWA is once again proud to stand in solidarity with activists from across the country to call for protection of our rights, our safety, our health, and our families—and to elect women to local and national offices in 2018!

We will meet at 10:00 a.m. at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, 3 Speedwell Avenue, Headquarters Plaza (indoor parking, self-pay), Morristown, NJ. The hotel is also within walking distance of public transportation via bus and train.

Let us know if you’re coming. Click here to join us.

We will march from the hotel to join the rally and march at the Morristown Green at 10:30 a.m. SHARP. The march will conclude at 1:00 p.m.

Please note: Dress warmly, wear comfortable shoes, and make your own lunch arrangements.

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Nominate Carey Brown for PERS Board of Trustees

Between now and January 5th, 2018, nominations are open for the State employee representative on the Public Employee Retirement System (PERS) Board of Trustees. Right now, because State Workers have been united in our support of Labor-endorsed candidates, we hold a majority on the Board. We have an opportunity to nominate our Union Brother, Carey Brown for re-election to the PERS Board of Trustees.

Click here to nominate Carey Brown to PERS Board of Trustees.

While on the PERS Board Carey voted for an independent audit  of the consultants who decide where pensions funds are being invested. Also, Carey voted to push the State Investment Council to successfully decrease the amount of the pension funds that are invested in high risk Hedge Funds and investments – lowering fees and keeping more of your money in the pension system. If we don’t support our Labor-endorsed candidates, we can lose our majority on the board putting our pensions and our futures at risk.

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Get Out the Vote for Phil Murphy

I’LL BE THERE TO GET OUT THE VOTE FOR PHIL MURPHY FOR GOVERNOR!

On Tuesday, November 7, we have an opportunity to ensure our next Governor will tun New Jersey around by standing up for working people, good jobs, and strong public services. With Election Day only days away, it is critically important for CWA Local 1037 members to help Get-Out-the-Vote for CWA’s union-endorsed candidate for New Jersey governor, Phil Murphy.

We will be doing Get-Out-the-Vote labor walks this Saturday, November 4th, from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm, and on Election Day Tuesday, November 7th from 10:00 to 2:00 pm and 3:00 pm to 7:00 pm. Click here to volunteer and find a labor walk location near you. 

Local 1037 will provide a $40 stipend for members and guests (over 18 years old) per walk shift.

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Election Results for Local Vice Presidents

The Local 1037 Election Committee met on September 25, 2017 for the purpose of counting the ballots in the elections for Vice President of the State Worker Professional Bargaining Unit and Vice President for the Passaic County Board of Social Services. The Election Committee certified the tentative results of those elections as follows:

State Worker Professional Bargaining Unit Vice President:
Lillian Pichardo (89.1%)
Paresh Trivedi (8.9%)

Passaic County Board of Social Services Vice President:
Wanda Sawyer (53.0%)
Richard Grimes (47.0%)

These results become permanent in 10 days from the certification. The Election Committee has mailed the official certification to all candidates.

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Notices from CWA Local 1037 Election Committee

Attached are the notices from the CWA Local 1037 Election Committee. Please click on the links to read the full notice.

To see the notice being mailed to state worker members in the Professional Unit click here: Notice of Election for the Vice President of the Professional Bargaining Unit

To see the notice being mailed to members at the Passaic County Board of Social Services click here:  Notice of Election for the Vice President of the Passaic County Board of Social Services

Tentative Certification of Results

 

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CWA FIGHTS HEALTH CARE CUTS, WINS SAVINGS IN NEW JERSEY

After a year of work and advocacy by CWA and other public sector union representatives on New Jersey’s State Health Benefits Design Committee, nearly 40,000 CWA public workers will see no increase in health care costs in 2018 due to union-led efforts netting savings for members and taxpayers.

This is the first time that health care costs have not increased for CWA members since Governor Christie signed the sweeping pension and health benefits overhaul in 2011 which shifted costs for coverage to workers and eliminated the right for public sector workers to collectively bargain healthcare.

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INCREMENTS UPDATE: GOVERNOR CHRISTIE TRIES TO STALL

Click here to download a PDF of this statement

ON AUGUST 2, THE SUPREME COURT RULED THAT INCREMENTS CANNOT BE UNILATERALLY STOPPED AND THAT INCREMENT CASES ARE GRIEVABLE AND ARBITRABLE.

GOVERNOR CHRISTIE TRIES TO STALL

On August 2, the Supreme Court issued its decision on the “increments” cases in Atlantic County and Bridgewater. In these cases, the employers denied increments after expiration. The State of New Jersey, Judiciary, and other employers have relied upon the decision of the Public Employee Relations Commission (PERC) to deny payments of our increments.

The Appellate Court overturned PERC, and the employers appealed to the Supreme Court. PERC, Atlantic County, Bridgewater and the Christie Administration LOST. The Supreme Court UNANIMOUSLY AFFIRMED the Appellate Court’s judgment in Atlantic and Bridgewater and the Court specifically ruled that the denial of increments is grievable and can be arbitrated. (CWA’s attorney explained this in detail on a Town Hall call. If you did not join the call, you can listen to the full explanation here: http://cwanj.org/listen-increment-decision-tele-town-hall/)

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LISTEN AGAIN: INCREMENT DECISION TELE-TOWN HALL

Click here to listen to the increment decision tele-town hall.

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