As most people know, earlier this month, we celebrated Labor Day. To most of us, it marks the end of summer and a day off from work. Many also know it is a day to remember and recognize employees. As a public employee, I received an email from Gov. Cuomo complimenting our work. I also heard positive remarks from President Obama. However, I did not hear anything from anyone in our local government regarding this holiday.
Our local CSEA 818 employees have been working for more than three years without a contract and with no raise. Many of us feel the Fulton?County Board of Supervisors will not be satisfied until there are no local public employees. It does not seem to me that the Board of Supervisors bargains in good faith or very diligently.
Fulton County employees are among the lowest paid in this area. The board agreed with this when three years ago it gave Jon Stead a 26 percent raise over a two-year period, making his raise over $17,000, which is close to the salary of some of our employees. The union workers would be very happy with this same raise or even half of it, I am sure. Since we know this is not possible, we are willing to accept a reasonable raise. We have made many suggestions of how the county can save money, but there is no evidence that the board listens to these ideas at all. I have not heard of the board offering any other types of compensation - for example additional personal days (we currently only get one day per year) or perhaps an arrangement where we could get a reduced YMCA membership. The Fulton County employees have worked very hard doing the best job possible, even with a 10 percent or more reduction in staff. Most of us earn less money now than a few years ago when you factor in our health-insurance premiums.
We deserve a raise and a fair contract now.