Riverside County employees and the entire Riverside community won an important victory Tuesday at a special meeting of the County Board of Supervisors, where the board voted against imposing an insulting last, best and final offer – in favor of exploring other options.
The vote by the board is a good first step toward protecting county services and the community that relies on them and showed that the board may finally be listening to county workers who have repeatedly warned about the human and financial toll that imposition could bring.
Despite this promising development, the systemic issues in Riverside County haven’t gone away. The County is still facing critical staffing shortages and safety issues in our hospitals and more than two dozen unfair labor practice charges remain to be ruled on.
For the better part of two years, the County has been fighting workers in court, racking up untold legal costs, while also handing out millions of dollars to overseas consulting giant KPMG and contract nurses.
Hopefully, Tuesday signaled an end of the County’s curious approaching of spending taxpayer dollars hand over fist in the name of “fiscal responsibility.”
The hardworking public servants of Riverside County have been asking for months for the board to work with us to guide the County back on track and proceed with the best interest of residents, tax payers and public workers in mind and Tuesday’s vote is a step in that direction.
However, the Board signaled that they would take up the issue of imposition again in December and it must remain clear that imposition will hurt Riverside County. SEIU 721 members will do whatever it takes to protect our County and the community we serve – even if the Board won’t.