Thank you to the many members who spoke with legislators in support of HB 2421, Representative Schmick’s bill, which would fund a study of DOC staffing levels. While the bill has been pulled from executive session and will not be moving forward this year, lawmakers have given good reason for doing so.
After speaking today with the State Auditor’s office, Representative Schmick, and legislators on the House Public Safety Committee, we have learned that the bill was pulled because a comprehensive performance audit of the DOC, which had been on hold due to pending litigation, is now underway.
Representative Mike Sells of the 38th Legislative District has sent a letter to Attorney General Bob Ferguson requesting a legal opinion regarding supplemental pension options for state employees that exist outside of the state's plans.
The letter is similar to one that the Teamsters 117 Legal Department sent to Ferguson after he was elected in 2012.
An opinion by the AG's office would determine whether or not we are permitted under current state law to negotiate the Teamsters pension as an option into the DOC contract that can be voted on by the membership.
The Clallam Bay Corrections Center is on lockdown after an offender stabbed a Local 117 corrections officer in the neck with a fabricated weapon at approximately 10:15 a.m. on February 3. The officer was taken to a hospital in Port Angeles, where he was treated and released.
The case is currently under investigation. We will provide more information as soon as it is available.
In the meantime, please remember to stay safe, cover your co-workers' backs, and send your thoughts and prayers to your fellow member at Clallam Bay.
For a sample of the representational work on behalf of Teamsters at the DOC for the month of January, check out the DOC facility news section of the website.
January was a busy month for DOC Teamsters. Contract surveys were mailed out to all members in the state, and we had our first Teamsters Lobby Day on January 28. You can view a more detailed look at representational work by facility here.
Keep in mind that the work described in the facility news section is not comprehensive. The section will be updated on a bi-monthly basis and can be accessed in the member center under Department of Corrections and Law Enforcement.
Any feedback or suggestions you have would be appreciated. Thank you!
Starting Monday, February 3, the DOC is required to post a ruling in favor of the Union by the Public Employees Relations Commission (PERC) indicating that the Department committed a series of Unfair Labor Practices on a statewide basis and that it must comply with the remedies outlined in the notice.
The notice must be posted at all DOC facilities for 60 days.
Thank you to all of the members who had the courage to speak out when your rights were violated and to the many Shop Stewards who helped represent them throughout the process.
January 29th marks the three-year anniversary of the death of Jayme Lee Biendl, the Correctional Officer and member of Teamsters Local 117 who was tragically murdered at the Monroe Correctional Complex in 2011. For all of us, Officer Jayme Lee Biendl made the ultimate sacrifice, and we will never forget her.
In a short video, one of Officer Biendl's co-workers, Sergeant Michael Boe, remembers his fallen Sister.
Teamster 117 members from all corners of Washington State converged on Olympia today for the first Local 117 lobby day of the 2014 legislative session.
Members came from as far as Spokane, Walla Walla, the Tri-Cities, Clallam Bay, Aberdeen, Monroe, Vancouver and many other locations to speak with their legislators about critical issues facing Teamster families.
Check out the latest news from the 2014 legislative session in Olympia with our Teamsters 117 Report from Olympia. This issue outlines our legislative priorities for 2014 and gives a day-by-day account of our involvement with respect to a number of important bills that would impact working families.
The Report from Olympia will be published every other Friday throughout the legislative session. To request a print copy of the report, talk to your Business Representative.
View a PDF version of our Report from Olympia here.
Contract surveys were mailed out on January 17 to all Teamsters at the Department of Corrections, but the surveys have been slow to arrive in some parts of the state.
As a result, we will be extending the deadline for turning in the surveys to Monday, February 3, 2014.
Last year, on our Teamsters Lobby Day, members at the Department of Corrections were joined by dozens of Teamsters from other industries, including 40 Teamster taxi drivers and several Local 117 members, who at the time were on strike at United Natural Foods, Inc.
DOC members had come to Olympia that day to lobby for interest arbitration rights, which we ultimately won by way of an MOU signed by the Governor last year. But they also voiced their support of their fellow Teamsters in the taxi industry and on issues such as workers’ comp, FMLA, and paid sick days. Similarly, taxi drivers spoke about the need to pass their own taxi bill, but they lobbied their representatives on interest arbitration as well.