Union Security Officers Vote to Ratify Strong New Contract
SEATTLE— On Friday, June 17, SEIU6 security officers voted overwhelmingly to ratify a new contract that will cover over 4,000 officers working in King County for the next 3 years.
The new contract includes the strongest annual wage increases ever won by this bargaining unit, increased paid time off including the Juneteenth holiday, faster vacation accrual rates, increased employer-paid healthcare premiums, and protections against mandatory overtime.
Overall, the contract is expected to bring an additional $22 million in wages and benefits to union security officers over the next 3 years.
Security officers, who’ve seen their industry grow and their responsibilities increase since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, focused on winning wage increases in order to relieve staffing shortages and to retain experienced officers. The new contract puts limits on companies’ ability to force officers to work overtime holdover shifts.
“The pandemic has been hard on security officers. We were left out of essential pay, and many officers had to quit for health reasons or fear of getting sick. We’ve dealt with staffing issues with a lot of folks working mandatory overtime. We knew we had to address these issues going in, and I’m happy to say we did. Officers voted to approve this contract because our bargaining team listened to its members.” — Demetrus Dugar, SEIU6 Executive Board Member and Security Officer
Officers voted to ratify the new contract after bargaining with security companies over a period of 8 weeks. Hundreds of union officers took action during this period to ensure that their voices were heard at the bargaining table.
“The road to victory for the membership was not by strike but continued negotiation.” —Rob Lund, SEIU6 Executive Board Member and Security Officer
“As a union, we fought for this contract through thick and thin. A lot of things have changed since the pandemic started. We’re considered essential workers and our employers finally heard us when we demanded to be respected, protected, and paid.” —Jasmine Bell, SEIU6 Executive Board Member and Security Officer
“We’re proud of our bargaining team and our security membership for staying strong over these past few months. We were fighting for more than just this contract. We’re fighting for industries to invest in workers instead of treating them like they’re expendable. We’re so proud that our security officers will have more resources to honor the essential work they do and to help their families thrive.” —SEIU6 President Zenia Javalera