February 2014

Winning for Our Families and Communities

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It wasn’t easy, but we changed the conversation. When our LA County Children’s Social Workers went out on strike last December, no one could really predict how it would end. All of our LA County members had worked hard for nine months to win a good contract. We held rallies, mass pickets and a huge walk-out on Oct. 1.

January 2014

New Year, New Challenges

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The new year is here, and I’ve started thinking about what’s ahead for Local 721 members. One positive trend is that the economy is finally picking up and that means we’re seeing more money in our contracts. In the City of Riverside, Oxnard, Santa Barbara, Santa Ana, LA County and elsewhere, SEIU 721 members have negotiated strong contracts that include raises.

December 2013

We Are Not Done With Our LA County Contract Fight

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As of today, LA County members have been working without a contract for more than two months. That’s because the County is refusing to give our members raises and make them effective on October 1, the same day they made them effective for management.

November 2013

LA County Members Vote in Record Breaking Numbers to Support an Escalated Fight Up To and Including a Strike

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Since June, LA County members have been bargaining hard for a fair contract that’s good for them and the community. We hoped to finish the process during two days of intensive bargaining in late October. Unfortunately, negotiations with the County broke down.

October 2013

County Members Spoke Loud and Clear

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I take a lot of pride in being the President of Local 721. We’re a strong Local with an incredibly active membership. But on October 1, that pride swelled to new levels as I looked out at the massive crowd of LA County workers assembled in front of the County Hall of Administration.

September 2013

Honoring the Dream

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On Aug. 28, I was honored to speak at an LA City Hall rally celebrating the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington.

As I told the assembled crowd of SEIU 721 members, community leaders, clergy, and others, the good news is that we were able to come together to celebrate this historic occasion.

August 2013

Solidarity Makes Us Strong

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On July 1, I went to San Francisco as a representative of SEIU Local 721 to show support for our striking brothers and sisters in Local 1021 who work for the Bay Area Rapid Transit. At a rally, I told the BART workers that their friends in Southern California are standing behind them 100 percent.

July 2013

Winning for Working Families

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June was a big month for SEIU 721 members. Our endorsed candidates and measures won by considerable margins in Compton, Riverside, Oxnard and San Fernando. And I just got news of another important victory at the ballot box in Monterey Park, where our members joined with community allies to keep the fire department under local control.

June 2013

Affordable Care Act Takes Center Stage

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In May I found myself traveling quite a bit. I represent our membership on SEIU’s International Executive Board and also on the SEIU Quality Advisory Committee, which is a network of mostly public sector locals working hard to raise the standards in public healthcare delivery.

May 2013

New Executive Board Sworn In

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The President’s Report is delivered each month to the SEIU 721 Executive Board, so it’s fitting that I address my first report of the new term to you, the 41 members of the board. On April 23, we were all sworn in together at a ceremony in Los Angeles.