Our Union Makes Us Strong! AFSCME 2822 Class Action Grievance Updates

Salutations Union family, this is an update on class action grievances from your AFSCME 2822 chief steward and on behalf of all of our stewards in AFSCME 2822.

During the past three years we have fought for all of our AFSCME 2822 members and this has resulted in more grievances being filed for our Union members regarding Just Cause for discipline. In addition to these grievances, we have moved from fighting for individual grievance into what we call “class action grievances.”

What is a class action grievance?
In our Unionized workplace, a grievance is a complaint filed by our Union against the employer alleging that the employer broke an obligation outlined under a collective bargaining agreement. A collective bargaining agreement is the contract that governs the terms and conditions of employment for our Unionized workers. A class action grievance is a complaint alleging violations of a collective bargaining agreement that affect a large group of our unionized employees.

The following is a list and additional information on the class action grievances. Alleged violations of our contract are cited below each grievance. Our AFSCME 2822 contract can be found here.

Removal of Union Postings and Unfair Labor Practices

During worksite organizing, our workers were distributing surveys on treatment in the workplace and posters asking the question: “Does Hennepin County terminate workers of color at twice the rate their employed?” This was being done as part of our as part of our anti-discrimination campaign. De-partment managers and labor relations directed people to take them down. Supervisors and managers also intimidated workers from participating in union activity by incorrectly informing workers that they could not distribute union surveys unless they were union stewards. Our Local filed a class action grievance for these acts of intimidation and union busting.

ARTICLE 4 - UNION SECURITY, Section 7. Impact: all 2822 workers AND all Hennepin county workers.

Holiday Pay & Compensation
A group of workers in the Juvenile Detention Center came to us regarding holiday pay. The employer is currently only compensating workers 8 hours of compensation time when they are required to work on holidays for 12 hours of work.
ARTICLE 10 - HOLIDAYS, Section 2. Impact: all 2822 workers impacted.

Rounding Down of Wage Increases
Our long-term workers in AFSCME 2822 brought this concern to our attention. Our contract has pay increases calculated rounded up. However, our pay increases on our paychecks are calculated rounded down. This has resulted in pay increases being lower then contractually stated increases.
ARTICLE 38 - SALARY RATES. Impact: all 2822 workers AND all Hennepin county workers.

Termination Language Impacting Unemployment Benefits
Recently, an AFSCME 2822 member was terminated. We believe the language in the termination letter is not in accordance with MN State Statute. The employer is using this language to avoid paying unemployment benefits to workers. This appears to be deceitful, unfair, and dishonest.
MN State Statute 268.095 Ineligibility Because of Quit or Discharge, Unfair labor practices. Impact: all 2822 workers impacted AND all Hennepin county workers impacted.

Non-Discrimination & Public Discipline
Workers in Resident & Real Estate Services were being routinely harassed by a supervisor in front of customers. This supervisor also did not offer advancement opportunities to older workers and exhibited acts of favoritism and other inappropriate behavior. Workers joined together to file a class action non-discrimination and public discipline grievance.
ARTICLE 32 - DISCIPLINE. Impact: all 2822 workers impacted.

Steward Contact Information
If you have been impacted by the above issues, please contact us at [email protected]!
If your email is regarding requesting a steward, please ensure your email contains DATE, TIME, WORK LOCATION, your HOME AND WORK phone/email information, and short summary of the issue/reason for the investigation/steward request. Stewards are assigned by the chief stewards. Your email should also be sent to [email protected] and [email protected]. PLEASE "REPLY ALL" TO EMAILS. We can also be contacted at 612-470-2822.

Also for more steward updates, please attend our monthly membership meetings the first Wednesday of the month at 6:30 PM in the Minneapolis Central Library Doty Board Room.