Golden Gate Members Ratify New Contract After More Than One Year of Bargaining
Golden Gate Bridge Labor Coalition members, including Local 21, had been fighting for a new contract and to keep healthcare affordable for their families since April of 2011. Last month, after more than one year at the bargaining table, Local 21’s Allied and Engineering chapter members at the Golden Gate Bridge Highway and Transportation District ratified new contracts, along with other unions in the coalition. As part of the agreement, members will receive a $500 signing bonus and an immediate 2% wage increase. Additional 2% raises will take place in the first pay periods of July 2012 and July 2013.
The new agreement represents a long awaited conclusion to a difficult bargaining campaign where the District demanded unfounded concessions, bargained in bad faith, and galvanized the coalition of unions to hold multiple rallies, pickets, and actions garnering national media attention.
As part of the new contract, the District also agreed to conform the District healthcare coverage for domestic partners with the system used in the City and County of San Francisco. This will ease the unfair tax burden for those members who currently cannot legally marry in California. Members who are longtime District employees will be eligible for 30 days annual vacation after 29 years of service. Specific side table issues were also resolved, including having ergonomic assessments conducted by a third party specialist, and new overtime emergency call back language for members in the Engineer’s Chapter.
In addition to the gains concessions were made at the table including a new pension formula of 2% @ 60 for new hires and a fixed monthly healthcare contribution to help address the District’s deficit. However, even after the additional costs of concessions agreed to at the table, members will still receive real increases in their wages for three years.