Seattle / King County Public Health - Supervisors

Results of public health nurses meeting

Nurse Representatives from WSNA attended the county’s PHN meeting on Thursday, April 4.

During this meeting management rolled out their proposals for restructuring PHN Care Models in Women’s and Infants programs. The details of the proposed changes have not been completely determined, but it is clear that PHN nurses working in these programs will be impacted. Effects may include changes to work processes, including work sites and schedules, as well as layoff.

The County’s current plan includes layoff of up to 15 WSNA PHN nurses, although that number has not been finalized. The county is offering its Voluntary Separation Program to eligible nurses. If eligible nurses receive VSP, the number of layoffs will decrease.

The time line provided at the April 4 meeting included submission of VSP applications from mid-April on, with determination of eligibility In June/July. Layoff notifications are to be sent following VSP determinations.

It is possible that PHN nurses working in other programs, and other WSNA represented RN positions, will receive layoff notifications.

Layoffs would be effective Dec. 31, 2019.

Management has been meeting with PHN nurses this week. Meetings will continue into May. WSNA will be attending the meeting Monday, April 15 at the downtown clinic.

We also plan to meet with management next week for a preliminary discussion of the effects of their proposed changes. We will update you following that meeting.

Questions? Please contact WSNA Nurse Representative Sara Frey at sfrey@wsna.org or 206-575-7979 ext. 3039.

In Solidarity,
Sara Frey, WSNA Nurse Representative on behalf of your Local Unit Officers

FREE Convention registrations available

Your local unit officer is sponsoring two WSNA members, one from jail services and one from clinic services, to attend the Washington State Nurses Convention, May 1-3, 2019 at the Tulalip Resort Casino

Don’t miss amazing speakers, great professional development and a full year of CNEs!

The sponsorship covers your registration fee of $450 so that you can attend this fun and educational event.

More information, including the full convention agenda, at rnconvention.org.

Please contact me, WSNA Nurse Representative Sara Frey, at sfrey@wsna.orgor at 206-575-7979, ext. 3039 to reserve your spot.

Scholarships will be given on a first come basis.

Also available: Mandatory Suicide Prevention Training Add-on
(Not included in Local Unit sponsored free registration.)

With the University of Washington School of Nursing, WSNA is offering the opportunity to fulfill your 6-hour mandatory suicide prevention training requirement for licensure as part of your trip to Convention. This training is approved by the Washington Department of health and on their model list. Separate registration required. Lunch provided. 6 CNEs

Announcing changes in WSNA nurse representative

Please welcome WSNA Nurse Representative Sara Frey, JD, BSN, RN. Beginning Monday, Dec. 10, 2018, Sara will be taking over all new issues as they arise at Seattle & King County Public Health - Supervisors. I will finish up most of the outstanding matters to their conclusion and assist Sara in the coming months, as needed.

Sara can be reached at sfrey@wsna.org or 206-575-7979, ext. 3039.

It has been a pleasure working with all of the Seattle & King County PH supervisors. I am continuing my work here at WSNA as a nurse representative with a few new assignments. I will miss the Seattle & King County PH supervisors but know you will be in good hands with Sara.

All my best to you,

Ed Zercher, BSN, RN
WSNA Nurse Rep
206-575-7979, ext. 3022

Nurse recruiter vote ratified

By overwhelming majority, the bargaining unit has voted to move the nurse recruiter classification to the supervisor bargaining unit. A copy of the Memorandum of Agreement can be accessed in the contracts and documents section.

For any questions, please contact WSNA Nurse Representative Ed Zercher at ezercher@wsna.org or (206) 575-7979, ext. 3022

Contract/wage update

Thanks to everyone for your patience in this long and tedious process! WSNA has been informed that the Supervisor Contract has been signed by the Executive as of Monday night. We are predicting increased wage implementation (prospective) for the 9/21 paycheck with any retro owed coming on the next paycheck (10/5).

We will notify you if there are any changes or updates.
As always, thanks for all you do in serving the fine folks of our communities.

Your Contract has been Ratified!

You have voted and your Contract has been Ratified! On Tuesday, March 14th, WSNA conducted a vote of the Supervisors regarding proposed changes to our recently negotiated contract. The result was a “YES” by an overwhelming majority.

A huge thanks to the great negotiation team of Chris Rubin and Sean Dumas.

Together Everyone Achieves More!

In Solidarity,
Ed Zercher, BSN, RN
WSNA Nurse Representative

Upcoming Contract Vote Reminder

On Tuesday March 14th, WSNA is conducting a vote on proposed contract changes as part of our recent bargaining.

Your Supervisor Negotiations Team is made up of Chris Rubin, Sean Dumas, Ed Zercher and WSNA Attorney Linda Machia. They will all be on hand to answer any questions you have.

Time: 11am to 1pm
Location: Chinook Room 118

You can see a summary of changes by clicking here.

See you there!

Convention 2017

Don't miss the upcoming Washington State Nurses Convention May 3-5! At Convention, we’ll be diving deep into one the top issues for registered nurses today: Creating a Culture of Safety. Register today for early bird pricing and hotel discounts (through March 30). Some local units are sponsoring attendance at Convention. Check with your local unit officers.

Your WSNA Team of Supervisors has reached a Tentative Agreement!

Your WSNA Team recommends a “YES” vote!

At the conclusion of our 6th Negotiations Session, we reached a tentative agreement with King County on Monday February 27th. Highlights include:

  • A 3-year contract with wage increases of: 2.25% eff. 1/1/17 (this will be retro to Jan 1st 2017); 2.25% eff. 1/1/18; and 2.6% eff. 1/1/19,
  • One additional vacation day will be added in 2017.,
  • 2 additional vacation days added in 2018.,
  • KCFML will begin to run concurrent beginning 1/1/18, and
  • Paid Parental Leave will begin 1/1/17.

There are a few other minor changes that we will be discussing in detail at the Ratification Vote on March 14th 2017.

This March 14th vote will take place from 11am to 1pm in the Chinook Building Room 118.

We hope that everyone will be available to show up and vote.

Your WSNA Negotiations Team Members and WSNA Attorney will be on hand to answer all of your questions.

We are proud to have secured this 3-year contract and once again, we recommend a “YES” vote.

Negotiations Update

Your Negotiations Team of Supervisors met for our 5th Session on Friday, January 27, 2017.

The County provided a “What if” proposal on a number of outstanding items of priority.

WSNA gave a package counter proposal that included economics and a 3 year contract length. Unfortunately, the County elected not to accept this and we remain divided on several issues including wages and benefits.

Our next session is set for February 27th and we are looking for an additional date prior to that if at all possible.

Feel free to contact your WSNA Supervisor Representatives Chris Rubin or Sean Dumas with questions or you can email Ed Zercher at ezercher@wsna.org.

We will continue to recognize your priorities and fight for what you deserve!

Negotiations Update

Your Bargaining Team of Supervisors met with King County Public Health Administration for a 4th time yesterday, December 5th.

There are a number of issues that remain.

  1. The County would like Jail Health Supervisors to move from hourly to exempt;
  2. The wages proposed by the County are below the cost of living at 1.75%;
  3. The County has proposed all Supervisors give up the existing KCFML as consecutive leave to FML moving it to concurrent and thus eliminating 12 weeks of secured leave. They have proposed this in exchange for Paid Parental Leave.

Based on recent feedback from our BU members, we will not accept the exchange of KCFML consecutive leave for Paid Parental Leave. We are also pushing back on the proposed change for Jail Health Supervisors moving from hourly to exempt.

We are working to protect the interests and benefits of all Bargaining Unit members and will continue to do so based on feedback.

We are working to attain wage increases reflective of the increased cost of living.

Our next Bargaining Session is set for January 27th.

For questions, please contact your Nurse Representative Ed Zercher at ezercher@wsna.org.
You can also feel free to reach out to your dedicated Bargaining Team members Sean Dumas in Jail Health Services or Chris Rubin in Community Health Services.

Negotiations Update!

Your WSNA Negotiations Team has met with King County Administration for a third time on Tuesday, December 20th. We were able to reach some tentative agreements on some smaller issues while some of the larger issues remain unresolved.

We engaged in discussions regarding the employer’s proposal regarding leaves and working condition issues.

Our next scheduled session is set for January 5th, 2017. We will be contacting the entire Bargaining Unit to discuss the County’s package proposals; so stay tuned.

Thanks to everyone who took the time to participate in our Conference Call on December 17th. It was because of that phone call that we had lengthy discussions on KCFML concurrent vs. consecutive in addition to Paid Parental Leave. The will of the participants on that phone call led our discussions.

For questions, please contact WSNA Nurse Representative Ed Zercher at ezercher@wsna.org.

Happy Holidays from your WSNA Negotiations Team:
Sean Dumas, JHS
Chris Rubin, CHS

Negotiations Update - Action Required

Attention all WSNA Supervisors and Area Managers at Seattle King County CHS and JHS: Your WSNA Contract Negotiations Team met again with King County Administration on Monday, December 12th. Both parties exchanged more comprehensive proposals and your WSNA Negotiation Team and Lead Negotiator spent a lot of time articulating the priorities of the Bargaining Unit. We were able to agree on some items but remain divided on others. After receipt of the employers’ proposal, your team concluded that your input is essential on some major issues. As a result we have arranged the following:

There will be a conference call on Friday, December 16th at 10am for all CHS and JHS Supervisors and Managers to discuss the County’s proposal on KCFML and Paid Parental Leave.

Please dial in promptly at 10am to (888-721-8686) and then enter Conference code (5342609#).

There will be an in-person meeting at the soonest available date for all JHS Supervisors and Managers to discuss the County’s proposal to change all JHS Supervisors from Hourly to Exempt status.

Please keep an eye out for a communication from WSNA setting a date to discuss how this may impact your working conditions.

King County Administration Bette Pine and Dorene Hersh have given the go ahead for all Supervisors and Managers to attend these calls/meetings…. so please make it a priority!
If you are not able to attend the meeting/conference call specific to your area of employment, please call your Nurse Representative to discuss this at 206-575-7979, ext. 3022 after 10am on Friday, December 16th.

Negotiations Have Begun!

On Tuesday, November 22nd, your Negotiations Team of Supervisors met with County Administration and Labor Relations for our first negotiations session.

Both Parties exchanged opening proposals that included such items as Wages, Paid Parental Leave, Parking Rates, Health Benefits, and many others.

Your WSNA Negotiations Team has been preparing for months to address the priorities of our Bargaining Unit Supervisors and Managers.

Your WSNA Negotiations Team is comprised of North Public Health PHSS Chris Rubin, JHS PHSS Sean Dumas, WSNA Attorney Laura Anderson and WSNA Nurse Representative Edward Zercher.

Please be on the lookout for updates throughout this process, as we go back to the table on December 8th.

In Solidarity, We Prevail!

Negotiation preparation has begun!

Thanks to everyone who took the time to submit Negotiation Survey responses sent out in August.

Your Negotiation Team has met twice to review the surveys you submitted, review the current contract in detail and go over additional feedback and concerns relayed by the membership.

We will be meeting again as a team in the next couple of weeks and then again with our WSNA attorney to finalize priorities and set dates for negotiations.

We commit to keeping you updated throughout the process but also encourage you to contact your negotiations team members anytime along the way.

Your Negotiations Team is Sean Dumas (JHS) and Chris Rubin (North Clinic).

It time to participate in our 2016 Negotiations Survey

2016 Negotiations Survey

Please take a few minutes to fill out the survey and have a voice in your Negotiation Team's priorities for this round of bargaining. Your current contract ends December 31, 2016. Log on and provide your feedback today!

Deadline for response is Friday, August 5, 2016.

Your voice matters!

Paid Parental Leave Ballot Results: Bargaining Unit Votes “No”

We have counted the ballots for the Paid Parental Leave. The measure did not pass.

Due to a number of Seattle King County Supervisors feeling as if there had not been enough relevant information sent out by WSNA to allow them to make an informed decision, the original vote was challenged and we subsequently conducted a re-vote. The measure failed by a majority vote.

Currently you retain 12 weeks of paid FMLA and 18 weeks of unpaid KCFML during which you have job protection and your health care benefits are paid by the county. Had the bargaining unit voted to accept the paid parental leave, you would have lost access to 12 weeks of unpaid KCFML permanently. The county stated that if you wanted to participate in the paid parental leave, your leaves would, from this point forward, run concurrently (at the same time), rather than consecutively (one after the other) as it is now.

We are really disappointed in the county’s hardline stance on this issue. It is particularly insulting because of all the work the bargaining unit did to Save Public Health in 2014. We attempted to work with the Office of Labor Relations to come up with some solutions, but they did not budge. Other unions that represent public health employees gave up 12 weeks of unpaid KCFML a couple of years ago for $500 per member. At that time, the Local Unit Officers did not believe that it was in the best interests of our nurses to accept the money in exchange for this benefit. I can anticipate that King County will come after this benefit hard this fall when we start negotiations for a new contract. We will need to be strong and united!

What does this mean for you? It means that you will not be paid for 12 weeks of paid parental leave, but you have potentially 12 weeks more unpaid time to spend with your new baby or child. Your colleagues can still donate sick leave and vacation upon request.

If you have any questions, please feel free to send your WSNA Nurse Rep Ed Zercher an email to Ezercher@wsna.org or call me at (206) 575-7979, Ext. 3022.

Vote on paid parental leave

In December 2015, King County Council approved an ordinance for paid parental leave. WSNA needs to hear from you to determine if your bargaining unit should participate in this pilot project. This is an important matter which requires your careful consideration.

Three documents related to this:

  1. FAQ’s about paid parental leave,
  2. MOU -- Memorandum of Understanding Paid Parental Leave,
  3. King County Ordinance on Paid Parental Leave.

On the FAQ document, please note the bolded information at the top of page 1. You currently have leaves running consecutively; that is, if you meet the required qualifications, you have 12 weeks of FMLA and then 18 weeks of KCFML. The county proposes that if the bargaining unit participates in the paid parental leave pilot, from that point forward, your leaves will be required to run concurrently.

If your bargaining unit approves the pilot, it will run from January 1, 2016, through December 31, 2016 and will be retroactive to January 1, 2016.

Ballots must be postmarked by February 5, 2016, to qualify for the vote.

The Contract Has Been Voted In!

On Friday, December 12th, your contract for years 2015 and 2016 was voted in by your members by an overwhelming majority of votes.

This contract will be posted to your WSNA Unit Home page as soon as we are able to get the final version in the hands of all parties for signatures.

Thanks to your Local Unit Officers Lois Schipper and Chris Rubin for their dedication to this process and the many meetings it took to get to where we are!

Wishing all of you a very prosperous and Happy Holiday Season!

Ed Zercher
WSNA Nurse Representative