Solidarity Center Guild Unit Ratifies Three-Year Contract

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The widely scattered Guild unit at the Solidarity Center has ratified a collective bargaining agreement to succeed the contract that expired Sept. 25.

The new contract features a 1 percent signing bonus, and annual wage increases of 1.5 percent the first year, 1.75 percent in the second year, and 2 percent in the third year.

“Overall, negotiations went pretty smoothly,” said Solidarity Center Unit Chair Rob Pajkovski, “and we were able to make some important gains. The SC also wanted a few things, but nothing of real consequence to us or our job security.”

“We were able to win back language that makes it easier to take comp days, and, we also increased the number of days from three floating personal/holidays to four comp days,” the unit chair said. “We were also able to improve our health-care protection. If the medical treatment you need is not available in [the Guild member’s] post country, the SC will cover flight and lodging to access needed health care in the nearest available country.”

In other contract highlights, paid parental leave was increased from six to 10 weeks, and there were gains in language covering sick leave, compassionate leave, severance pay, and in the Center’s contribution to the 401(k) plan.

And in what Pajkovski called “a major victory for us,” Article 22 (Respect and Dignity) will be subject to arbitration in the new contract. “Up until now, we could file a grievance if we felt that we had not been respected or treated with dignity, but we could not arbitrate those issues.”

The new three-year contract received tentative approval from the Guild bargaining committee Sept. 30. The members of the negotiations team were Pajkovski, Hind Cherrouk, Laurie Clements, Geoff Herzog, Tristan Masat, Jana Silverman, David Welsh, and WBNG Executive Director Cet Parks.

Launched by the AFL-CIO in 1997 as the American Center for International Labor Solidarity, the nonprofit organization assists workers around the world who are attempting to build democratic and independent trade unions. Funding is provided by the U.S. Agency for International Development, the departments of State and Labor, private foundations, and national and international labor organizations.

WBNG has been representing approximately two dozen Solidarity Center workers – many of whom are stationed outside the United States – since 2002. The new agreement expires Sept. 25, 2019.

Tentative Three-Year Agreement Reached at Solidarity Center

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Guild bargainers on Sept. 30 wrapped up talks with Solidarity Center management and later announced that a tentative agreement had been reached on a three-year contract to succeed the deal that expired Sept. 25.

“The SC and Guild will work on finalizing the new CBA language,” Solidarity Center Unit Chair Rob Pajkovski said in an email. When the review process is complete, he said, the tentative agreement will be forwarded to the two-dozen member unit for a ratification vote.

Other members of the Guild Solidarity Center bargaining committee were David Welsh, Geoff Herzog, Hind Cherrouk, Jana Silverman, Laurie Clements, Tristan Masat, Rick Hall, and WBNG Executive Director Cet Parks.

Launched by the AFL-CIO in 1997, the nonprofit organization assists workers around the world who are attempting to build democratic and independent trade unions. Funding is provided by the U.S. Agency for International Development, the departments of State and Labor, private foundations, and national and international labor organizations.

WBNG has been representing approximately two dozen Solidarity Center workers – many of whom are stationed outside the United States – since 2002.

Solidarity Center Bargainers Expect to Wrap Up Talks Sept. 30

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The two-dozen member Guild unit at the Solidarity Center has finished its second day of negotiations over a successor collective bargaining agreement to the three-year deal that expired Sept. 25.

“Overall, the negotiations are going pretty smoothly,” said Solidarity Center Unit Chair Rob Pajkovski. “We settled most of our non-economic proposals.”

Pajkovski said that the talks soon could be completed. “Friday we will begin to bargain over wages and a few other issues. We expect to finish by the end of the day.”

Other members of the Guild bargaining committee are David Welsh, Geoff Herzog, Hind Cherrouk, Jana Silverman, Laurie Clements, Tristan Masat, Rick Hall, and WBNG Executive Director Cet Parks.

Launched by the AFL-CIO in 1997, the nonprofit organization assists workers around the world who are attempting to build democratic and independent trade unions. Funding is provided by the U.S. Agency for International Development, the departments of State and Labor, private foundations, and national and international labor organizations.

WBNG has been representing approximately two dozen Solidarity Center workers – many of whom are stationed outside the United States – since 2002.

The Solidarity Center’s Guild bargaining team gathered in Washington just before talks began.

Solidarity Center WBNG Unit Begins Talks Over New Agreement

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The two-dozen member Guild unit at the Solidarity Center began negotiations over a successor collective bargaining agreement to the three-year deal that expired Sept. 25.

Solidarity Center Unit Chair Rob Pajkovski said on the eve of talks that a management negotiator had indicated that a new contract could be reached by the end of the month. “We are not so sure about that,” Pajkovski said.

Other members of the bargaining committee are David Welsh, Geoff Herzog, Hind Cherrouk, Jana Silverman, Laurie Clements, Tristan Masat, Rick Hall, and WBNG Executive Director Cet Parks.

Launched by the AFL-CIO in 1997, the nonprofit organization assists workers around the world who are attempting to build democratic and independent trade unions. Funding is provided by the U.S. Agency for International Development, the departments of State and Labor, private foundations, and national and international labor organizations.

WBNG has been representing approximately two dozen workers – many of whom are stationed outside the United States – since 2002.

The Solidarity Center’s Guild bargaining team gathered in Washington just before talks began.