Riverside County ordered to pay affected SEIU 721 members back pay and interest penalties for violating labor laws in 2009.
After a lengthy legal process which lasted almost five years, the Public Employment Relations Board (PERB) has ruled Riverside County violated the rights of SEIU 721 members when it declared an impasse in 2009 and denied step increases to several hundred members whose anniversary dates fell on the last four days of July 2009. These workers are owed thousands of dollars in back pay and interest penalties.
“This victory is about maintaining hope and trusting our Union to fight for us. Having been involved in this case every step along the way, this is proof positive to me that justice can prevail and our Union will use every resource available to ensure workers’ rights are protected. “– Wendy Thomas, SEIU 721 Regional Vice President
On April 24, 2014, SEIU 721 negotiated an agreement in which the County withdrew their latest appeal and agreed to comply with the final PERB order.
• County must make whole, with 7% interest, all workers that were affected.
• The County is also required to notify all employees of this violation by posting the PERB order in all worksites and via email.
In November 2009, SEIU 721 filed an Unfair Labor Practice (ULP) charge against Riverside County after discovering anniversary step/merit increases had been withheld prior to the start of the new MOU on August 1, 2009.
In 2010, formal hearings were held before a PERB judge.
In 2011, the PERB judge ruled the County had violated labor laws when it imposed terms and conditions of employment on SEIU 721 represented employees in July 2009. He ordered the County to make these employees whole without interest. The County appealed the decision and the issue went before the full PERB board.
In March 2014, the PERB Board upheld the judge’s earlier ruling in SEIU 721’s favor and added a 7% interest penalty. The County had 90 days to file an appeal to the Superior Court.
SEIU and the County are still in the process of compiling the final list of affected employees. Once completed, all eligible employees will be notified by mail so make sure you have your current mailing address on file with SEIU. If you had an anniversary date in the last four days of July 2009, did not receive a step/merit increase, and believe you may be affected by this ruling, please contact your worksite organizer or call the 721 Member Connection at (877) 721-4YOU.