Hundreds of San Bernardino County professionals and several community leaders gathered at lunchtime on April 28th to protest short-staffing in county departments and to show support for their bargaining team, which has been at the table since last August trying to win a fair contract that will deal with high caseloads and workloads.
SEIU 721 San Bernardino professionals say that pay cuts high, staff turnover and large numbers of vacancies in key classes, like children’s social workers, psychiatrists, lab technicians and environmental health specialists, have led to shockingly high caseloads and workloads. The short-staffing endangers children in the Department of Children and Family Services caseload and threatens public health, they say. These issues were a key reason San Bernardino Professionals recently voted to join SEIU 721.
The goods news, bargaining team members Oracio Diaz and Staci Richards told them, is that the county is beginning to recognize they have a problem and there is movement at the bargaining table.