Statement from SEIU Local 721 President, Bob Schoonover on the California Public Employment Relations Board (PERB) Issuing a Complaint against the County of Riverside over Unfair Practices Charges
“We are emboldened by the Public Employment Relations Board’s decision to side with County workers and issue a complaint against the County of Riverside for their refusal to bargain in good-faith to find a sensible resolution at the bargaining table.
For more than a year the County has given workers and taxpayers the runaround on our multiple requests for honesty and transparency, and has instead opted to make a mockery of the negotiation process. During the course of contract negotiations we have offered approximately forty reasonable bargaining proposals to the County so we can find a pathway to a fair contract. The County has deliberately turned a blind-eye to our good-faith efforts and has refused to recognize or consider almost half of our proposals.
PERB’s issuance of a complaint corroborates our claims about the County’s bad-faith bargaining tactics. The County did not enter negotiations with its County workers to find well-thought out solutions that improve County services or cut revenue waste, but rather to simply evade transparency and implement cuts without any accountability on how their proposals will impact the County’s ability to deliver critical public services.
Riverside County employees and workers deserve better. The Labor Board’s complaint sends the clear message that the County prematurely and irresponsibly declared an impasse, and that they should return to the table immediately. It should be noted, that this complaint issued against Riverside County is a result of just one of 30 charges filed against Riverside County.
On multiple occasions we have offered to negotiate and bargain around the clock only to be spurned by the County. We will continue to call upon the County to drop their ruthless attack on County employees and services, and roll up their sleeves and return to the table to find sensible solutions once and for all.”