Season’s Greetings! I hope that this post finds you all well and looking forward to the New Year. My own personal feeling tells me that the year may be full of challenges and decisions that may be tough to make. As we prepare to go into bargaining, I want to begin by thanking those individuals who took the time to email this past summer and talk about issues they hope can be resolved at the bargaining table. The general membership meeting in Dayton was well attended by over 100 members. We took a lot of notes and we did a lot of listening.
SCOPE will send a letter of intent to bargain with the State in early 2015. Since the other union contracts expire before ours does, we will go in order and that means SCOPE will be last to bargain at the table. There is an advantage in that, as we will have full knowledge of what the State plans on providing in terms of economics and benefits.
We will be planning a number of town hall meetings around the state. These will be held after work hours or on the weekend. You may find yourself meeting with members who work in a difference agency and are part of your association. This will give us a chance to see other points of view, and find out what is important outside of our direct peer groups.
I was invited to meet with the other State unions in late November. We briefly discussed our concerns to one another. If you are new to state employment, often what OCSEA does concerning wages and benefits sets a pattern for all of the other unions. We have never received a lower or higher percentage of “cost of living” raise than our brothers and sisters in the other unions. It does set the foundation for our negotiations and we wish OCSEA success in the coming months.
I have asked the site representatives to start collecting e-mail addresses of members who want to receive negotiations updates via email. If you don’t have an e-mail account at home, buddy up with someone who can share with you the communications of the union.
Thank you for all you do and may the New Year bring you many blessings and joy.
Dominic Marsano, President
State Council of Professional Educators