Firemen and Oilers SEIU Local 3, representing the City of Somerville’s custodians, and SEIU 888, representing the City’s crossing guards, have each signed new collective bargaining agreements with the city that ratify three-year contracts for members of both unions through fiscal 2017, Mayor Joseph A. Curtatone announced yesterday.
A signing ceremony for the custodians’ agreement was held on Thursday, June 26, in the Mayor’s Office at City Hall. The crossing guards previously signed their agreement at a ceremony in May.
Key components of the custodians’ agreement include:
- 2% salary increases in each year of the contract.
- The city will not contract out custodial services in Somerville Public Schools for the duration of the agreement, beyond those custodial services already provided by non-Local 3 members.
- The city agrees to maintain at least 28 full-time union custodial positions.
- Local 3 agrees to eliminate a $100 bonus for an employee that is absent four days or less in a contract year, while the perfect attendance bonus for a contract year is increased from $850 to $1,000.
- Evacuation Day is eliminated as a holiday, while the half-day holidays of Good Friday and New Year’s Eve are increased to full-day holidays. This brings the school custodians contract in line with the current school year and results in cost savings, due to custodians not receiving time-and-a-half pay or more for working on Evacuation Day.
- Sick time for new Local 3 members is from 15 days per year, while current members receive 18 days per year, each accrued at the rate of 1.25 per month.
Key components of the crossing guards’ agreement include:
- A wage adjustment in the first year of the contract to aid with the recruitment and retention of qualified and reliable crossing guards, followed by 2% increases in the second and third years of the contract.
- Incentive for perfect attendance and provision to include crossing children during Halloween as well as during the school day.
- Up to three days per year “inclement weather” pay in the event of school closings (limited to no more than one per week).
- The establishment of a “team leader” position to help the Police Department coordinate crossing guard assignments and activity.
- A provision to adequately provide for uniforms and equip crossing guards.
- Up to an additional hour added to the workday to address the needs of the city and the School Department in helping to protect unaccompanied minor children on their way to and from school.
“I want to thank Firemen and Oilers SEIU Local 3 and SEIU 888 for both proactively approaching the city early, before their previous contracts expired, and bargaining in good faith to come to equitable agreements that benefit all sides and avoid our custodians or crossing guards working while out of contract,” said Mayor Curtatone. “These agreements demonstrate that we value the hard work done by our custodial staff in keeping our buildings clean and inviting places to work and learn, and our crossing guards keeping our children safe on their way to and from school. Both CBAs brings more predictability to our budget for the next three years while ensuring that these services continue.”
“The union appreciates the cooperation from the mayor and city staff,” said SEIU Local 3 Business Agent Edmund ‘Ike’ Gabriel. “We look forward to working together in the future.”