In May of this year, the Higher Education bargaining team began the process of negotiating a successor contract for 2023-2025. We have a tentative agreement (TA) on the contract and the time has come for you to vote to ratify, or not ratify, this contract. As a dues-paying member, your vote on the contract is imperative and determines if this contract will be ratified and put forward to the Legislature for funding. The summary of changes and the compensation for the next biennium are described HERE. The MOU for Recognition and Retention (Lump Sum) is HERE. The Tentative Agreements for the changes to healthcare areHERE.
The WPEA Higher Education Bargaining Team will be hosting informational meetings to answer questions about the summary of changes and the ratification process. The meetings will be held over Zoom on the following days: September 22 – Thursday – 5:30 – 6:30 p.m. September 23 – Friday – 12:00 – 1:00 p.m. September 24 – Saturday – 2:00 – 3:00 p.m.
As a contract bargaining team, we have decided to remain neutral with regard to the ratification of this agreement. The decision whether to ratify will be up to the members.
If the membership majority votes, “No”: The Employer and Union would be at “impasse.” The law dictates that the Employer and Union would enter in to an “evergreen year,” where the first year of the contract would not be implemented. As a result, members would lose the wage increase for 2023, the COVID booster incentive, and all of the new language as outlined in the attached summary. We would then return to the bargaining table to continue bargaining for our 2024 contract. The Employer would implement their last, best and final proposal on July 1, 2024.
If the membership majority votes, “Yes”: The contract would go to OFM (Office of Financial Management) to analyze the financial viability of the contract before being sent to the legislature for approval. If approved, the contract would take effect July 1st, 2023, with the new language and economic terms.
We look forward to your participation in the ratification process. If you have any questions, please email firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you for all your tireless work as a WPEA member at your college.
In solidarity, Your WPEA Higher Education Bargaining Team Mark Knight (Bellevue College) Shyla Hansen (Cascadia College) Joey Hicklin (Clark College) Frederick Pieters (Edmonds College) Cara Beth Stevenson (Grays Harbor College) Margaret Hodun (Olympic College) Kelly Gardner (Pierce College) Lance Levesen (Skagit Valley College) Keenan Failing (Walla Walla Community College) Amanda Hacker (WPEA Contract Administration Director) Danielle Plesser (WPEA HE Bargaining Team Second Lead)
If you or any fellow member did not receive your letter from Honest Ballot by Friday, September 23rd, or if you have any questions about the election procedures, please contact HonestBallot at email@example.com. Customer service is available by email to firstname.lastname@example.org or (718) 279-8683.