Every day last week our Union's Negotiation Committee met with the State in mediation in an effort to reach an agreement over our 2021-2023 DOC contract. 

In those negotiations, we emphasized the incredible challenges and risks the COVID-19 pandemic present for State corrections employees and the indispensable role you play in maintaining public safety at a time of crisis.

Unfortunately, the State was unwilling to put forth an acceptable economic proposal that values and respects your essential work, and negotiations concluded without an agreement. 


The State's final economic proposal for the 2021-2023 biennium is a 3% wage reduction for all DOC Teamsters. Although we understand the impact on the State budget as it relates to the pandemic, this proposal is absolutely unacceptable and represents a grave disservice to DOC families.

As a member on our negotiation team put it, "We are essential, not sacrificial."

Later this month we will be taking the State's final economic proposal to the membership for a vote. Our entire Union's Negotiation Committee is unanimous in recommending that you vote NO on the State's proposal.

A NO vote by a majority of the membership will trigger the interest arbitration process. With interest arbitration, we will have an opportunity to present our case in a hearing before a neutral, third-party arbitrator who, after considering evidence presented by both sides, will issue an arbitration award. That award will be contingent on approval of the State Legislature. 


Voting will be conducted by phone or through the internet from August 24 starting at 0800 through August 28 at 1700. Prior to the vote, we will be holding Contract Update Meetings via Zoom to discuss the proposal. As soon as those meetings are scheduled, we will let you know.

Early next week, we will be sending a letter and detailed voting instructions to your home mailing address on file with the Union. It is important that we have your correct address, phone number, and email on file. If you need to update your contact information with the Union, please visit www.teamsters117.org/your_info.


The State is trying to recoup losses caused by the pandemic off the backs of hardworking Teamsters. This approach is both shortsighted and disrespectful. To send a clear message to the arbitrator and the State, all of us must be united in voting NO.

Many of you are dealing with enormous challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic and your health and safety are at risk every day. Thank you for the essential public safety service you are providing our communities.