SEIU and Other Union News

PSE members receive national recognition in Washington, D.C.

President Obama and The White House launched Champions of Change in 2013, a program that recognizes outstanding individuals from across the United States who have made a change in the field in which they work.

Through our work with the National Coalition of Classified Education Support Employee Unions (NCCESEU), two outstanding PSE members will receive this national recognition on May 11th, 2016 at The White House:

Doris Hominda

DORIS HOMINDA
Career and Technical Education
Bethel School District

Bio Excerpt:

“As an integral part of the Career and Technical Education Department in the Bethel School District near Tacoma, Doris provides innovative career exploration opportunities in under-represented fields, like “Girls in Engineering and Technology,” as well as “Boys in Health Care.” Doris takes initiative to organize events that encourage non-traditional career paths, provides her students with real-world experience by taking them on field trips to worksites, and offers assistance in making the connection into higher education.”

Ed AmmonsED AMMONS
Computer/AV Technician
Bethel School District

Bio Excerpt:

“The Bethel School District believes that digital learning compliments the excellent teaching and learning that is already happening in the classroom. Each day Edward Ammons, a Computer/AV technician in the Bethel Technology Department, models this belief and has for the past 22 years. His focus each day is to provide the students, staff, and teachers with technology expertise that supports a positive learning environment. He realizes the importance of keeping the technology running, otherwise the learning stops.”

The event will be live streamed on the White House website at www.whitehouse.gov/live/ on Wednesday, May 11, at 2:00 PM ET. The program will feature remarks by Senior Advisor to the President Valerie Jarrett. 

We will also be live tweeting the ceremony from Washington, D.C., so follow @PSEClassified on Twitter and join the celebration of these leaders in education all this week using #WHChamps.

During our time in our nation’s capital celebrating the incredible work of Doris and Ed, we will meet with members of Congress to discuss and lobby issues important to all classified employees, including funding for key educational programs. Take a look at some facts about our union that we will be sharing with lawmakers during the week of May 9th.

MKH-with-Reen-and-Tom-Feature

In Washington, D.C. last year, PSE President Reen Doser and Zone 13 Director Tom Krabbenhoft met with SEIU President Mary Kay Henry. Service Employees International Union (SEIU) is PSE’s affiliate organization and one of the fastest growing unions in the country, with over 2.1 million members.

The National Coalition of Classified Education Support Employee Unions (NCCESEU) also includes the California School Employee Association, Minnesota School Employee Association, SEIU Local 284 (Minnesota), the National Education Association, and the Ohio Association of Public School Employees.

Being a part of this coalition gives a powerful, united voice to PSE members in the other Washington. It is also a chance for national and local unions to work together and share issues affecting other states and identify common concerns and problems facing classified employees.

PSE State President Reen Doser chairs a meeting of the National Coalition of Classified Education Support Employees (NCCESEU) in Washington, DC. Pictured to her right is Kyle Lierman, Associate Director of the White House Office of Public Engagement, discussing strategies to raise the national profile of school workers.

PSE State President Reen Doser chairs a meeting of the National Coalition of Classified Education Support Employees (NCCESEU) in Washington, D.C. last year. Pictured to her right is Kyle Lierman, Associate Director of the White House Office of Public Engagement, discussing strategies to raise the national profile of school workers.

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SEIU Convention Election Results!

The 2016 international delegate election results are in; download the results here. 

 

PSE members had the opportunity to vote and help choose six delegates that will represent PSE at this year’s SEIU Convention in Detroit, MI. 

Ballots were sent out on February 1, 2016, and the Elections Committee met on the last weekend of February for a ballot count and reached a final results on February 29, 2016.

 

Elected SEIU Convention 2016 Candidates (in alphabetical order)

 

Gina Coleman

colemanI was elected by the zone council to complete the vacancy of Zone 6 director for PSE. It is an honor to hold this privilege in representing zone 6 members, and serving all members on the board of directors. Along with that responsibility, I have been assigned the chair of the ·sergeant-At-Arms committee.

I am in my 21st year at Tacoma School District. I am the chapter president and previously held positions as classification rep, vice-president, legislative and benefits rep. At the state level, I have attended Leadership Academy, TEAM, Legislative Conference, and served on various state committees. Advocating for PSE and members at lobby days, parades, rallies and serving disadvantage teenagers at the Auburn Teen Feed has been extremely rewarding.

I ask you place your trust in me to represent you at the SEIU convention. I love PSE, and believe to BE STRONG, I must BELONG at convention!

 

BJ Colvin

BJ ColvinI am currently the Zone 1 Director, the Vice President of the Walla Walla Chapter, and the bylaws committee chair. I would like to attend the 2016 SEIU Convention because I have a passion for trade unionism. I feel that I will represent PSE well due to my skills when it comes to the written language as well as my understanding of legal texts.

Thank you for your consideration.

 

Tom Krabbenhoft

Tom KrabbenhoftI would appreciate your vote to elect me as a delegate to represent you at the SEIU convention. I believe strongly in the importance of union wages and the educational focus of PSE. I appreciate the importance of paying for the higher wages and benefits we earn working in a union job and of being financially responsible with our members’ dues.I believe a strong SEIU makes for a strong PSE and strong communities and schools in Washington and across the nation.

I hold elected positions in my chapter and as zone director on the PSE board of directors. I am familiar with the rules and procedures governing proceedings that are necessary to be effective as a delegate. I will consider the motions, bylaw amendments, and business thoughtfully before voting. I will be a strong advocate and voice for the best interests of you and PSE. Thanks for your vote!

 

Cheryl O’Dell

Cheryl O'DellI believe I am a good representative of PSE/SEIU.

I am very dedicated union member. I am a strong advocate for our members. I have been active in our chapter for 15 years, building rep, classification rep, negotiations, trustee, insurance committee, IBN member, District Union Leader committee, Chapter President for 4 years. I have attended convention, leg conference, leadership classes. I have signed up and volunteered for state committees but unfortunately have not had that honor yet.

I have had the honor of attending a WEA unity conference in Maryland last September. Our local teachers union asked me to go as a PSE member along with other varying staff (district administrator, building administrator) from our district. The training I attended was about working collaborative on all levels within or district.

I have built strong connections with our members, district staff and also PSE state staff.

 

Pam Stevenson

Pam StevensonMy name is Pam Stevenson and I am declaring my intent to be a delegate for the SEIU International Convention. Unions have provided for my family my entire life, and for us it means earning a fair wage and the benefit of health care for our family. Unions have given workers a stronger voice and it’s even more important that our voices are heard in today’s economy. I want to be one of those voices.

I am currently working for the Auburn School District as a Health Tech. I have served a variety of leadership positions in my local chapter over the last 12 years, serving as Para Rep, Chapter Secretary, Chapter Vice President and Grievance Officer and at the state level organizing and serving on the PSE Legislative Council, I am currently serving my second term on the Board of Directors for PSE as the Zone 7 Director.

 

Janet Yanzick

Janet YanzickThough currently working in Transportation, I also have 11 years’ experience as a Para-Ed and in Food Service-bringing to Convention a broad representation of our members and what they want from our union. I am a past President of our Washougal Chapter, past Treasurer and current Legislature Rep.- giving me the opportunity to be on many negotiation teams.

I have serve on our District’s Insurance committees and Chapter Scholarship committee. Volunteered for the informational Teachers’ picket/rally at Esther Short Park in Vancouver. Recently I volunteered for the Blitz-collecting commitments from fellow members to stand with our union, stressing the importance of COPE which amounted too many of the members my team spoke with, to enroll! I have attended our PSE convention many times and have been active in our Legislative Conferences for the past three years. Thank you for your consideration for me as a Delegate for the SEIU Convention.

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PSE prays for San Bernardino

PSE’s hearts, thoughts and prayers are with our fellow SEIU members affected by the tragedy in San Bernardino.

Read the full statement by SEIU President Mary Kay Henry, and visit SEIU.org to support the families of those SEIU members lost and impacted.

PSESocialMediaAvatar

 

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2015 Classified Employee of the Year: Lynn Myers

At Convention this year, PSE’s highest honors were awarded to deserving classified and higher education employees. PSE’s best and brightest were recognized, but none was more deserving than Mead Paraeducator Lynn Myers, who was named 2015’s PSE Classified Employee of the Year.

“She is such a mentor to other PSE members,” said colleague Yolanda Dooley, who nominated Lynn for this honor. “I don’t think I would be involved in the union as much as I am if it weren’t for her.”

“She is a stable, steady union supporter,” added Zone 2 Director and Awards Committee Chair Charlotte Shindler. “She is able to relay the mission of PSE, the guidelines of PSE, what the members’ benefits are, and then she explains how you have to be a part of the process. She’s activated several members in PSE. She’s made them an advocate for the union.”

An active member for over 20 years, Lynn isn’t just an advocate for her colleagues. Her dedication to her students represents ALL public school employees in this state with distinction.

“In all my years of teaching, I have never seen, or worked alongside, such a dedicated paraeducator,” said Darren Nelson, Principal of Mt. Spokane High School.

 

Mead School District Assistant Superintendent Ken Russell, PSE President Reen Doser, Classified Employee of the Year Lynn Myers, Awards Chair Charlotte Shindler, PSE Secretary Deb Nutt and Mt. Spokane HS Principal Darren Nelson.

Mead School District Assistant Superintendent Ken Russell, PSE President Reen Doser, Classified Employee of the Year Lynn Myers, Awards Chair Charlotte Shindler, PSE Secretary Deb Nutt and Mt. Spokane HS Principal Darren Nelson.

“Her positive attitude, sense of humor, and personality are contagious and prevalent in all of the staff and students she comes into contact with.”
Many of her students lovingly refer to her as “Grandma,” a term she takes great pride in. She touches the lives of around 60 students each day, and makes sure that they are discovering their full potential, even if that can be difficult at times.

“You’ve helped me succeed when I really wanted to give up, and you taught me the right way,” said Tyler J., one of Lynn’s students.

“Your work ethic, dedication to excellence in every task, and the positive impact you have on students and the community distinguishes you among all fifty-thousand public school classified support staff across our state,” said Charlotte Shindler at our annual awards banquet before presenting Lynn with her award.

“It’s just overwhelming,” said Classified Employee of the Year Lynn Myers. “This is something that is a huge honor. I just never thought that I would be in that position. There’s so many deserving people, and I don’t really feel that I’m more deserving than anyone else. I’m just me.”

Congratulations Lynn! Click here for all the pictures from our awards banquet on Saturday, July 25th 2015.

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Giving YOU a nationwide voice!

As you know, PSE was recently in Washington, DC, working for school employees. As part of our efforts, PSE met with our coalition partners of the National Coalition of Classified Education Support Employee Unions (NCCESEU) to stay up-to-date on developments nationwide that affect workers like you.

To keep you informed and educated on these important national issues, we’ve brought back some great resources that were presented and discussed by the coalition in our nation’s capital.

  • Here is a great presentation given by Joel Packer, Executive Director of The Committee for Education Funding, which discusses federal funding and cuts to education.
  • A fact sheet from the National Education Association that discusses professional standards, education and training requirements for food service education support professionals.
  • Information presented by PSE that discusses our goals for funding and initiatives on a national scale.
  • Doug Nelson from PSE gave this presentation to discuss the importance of paraeducators in our schools, professional development and the implementation of new legislation.

The NCCESEU, chaired by PSE President Reen Doser, also consists of representatives from the National Education Association (NEA), California School Employees Association (CSEA), Minnesota School Employees Association (MSEA), SEIU Local 284 (Minnesota), Ohio Association of Public School Employees (OSPSE), and PSE. Together, the Coalition speaks on behalf of over 1 million school employees across the country.

MKH-with-Reen-and-Tom-Feature

In Washington, D.C., PSE President Reen Doser and Zone 13 Director Tom Krabbenhoft met with SEIU President Mary Kay Henry. Service Employees International Union (SEIU) is PSE’s affiliate organization and one of the fastest growing unions in the country, with over 2.1 million members.

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What is May Day?

You’ve probably heard that Friday, May 1 is May Day. You’re also probably familiar with the protests and demonstrations that happen every year on this day. But what is May Day, and what are those demonstrations about exactly?

May Day is International Workers' Day, celebrating all workers including school support staff.

May Day is International Workers’ Day, celebrating all workers, including school support staff.

“May Day” is International Workers’ Day. As a PSE member, you’re also a part of Service Employees International Union (SEIU), an international organization that represents over 2 million diverse workers in the US, Canada and Puerto Rico.

Across the world on May 1, workers take to the streets to honor International Workers’ Day. It is a celebration of the contributions of workers and their commitment to continue fighting for a better economy and stronger democracy. It is a day to honor all workers who call America their home.

Peaceful demonstrations will be happening in cities all over the country, including Seattle. If you are heading into the area, plan ahead and know where the demonstrations will be taking place. You can also follow along on SEIU’s blog for updates on what is happening across the country.

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We’re in D.C. working for school employees!

This week, PSE is in Washington, D.C. working for school employees like you!

PSE President Reen Doser, who was recently appointed chair of the National Coalition of Classified Education Support Employees (NCCESEU), is meeting with other coalition representatives to stay on top of nationwide union trends and to discuss budget developments in our state.

Later this week, PSE will head to Capitol Hill to meet with federal representatives about issues that affect workers in our state, including the need to fund more educational and training programs for school employees and increase staffing levels that were cut during the recession.

Education and Training for our members is one of PSE’s strategic goals, and we will fight for more staff development opportunities and union training for YOU.

Follow us on Twitter and Facebook for updates on PSE’s week in our nation’s capital.

PSE State President Reen Doser chairs a meeting of the National Coalition of Classified Education Support Employees (NCCESEU) in Washington, DC. Pictured to her right is Kyle Lierman, Associate Director of the White House Office of Public Engagement, discussing strategies to raise the national profile of school workers.

PSE State President Reen Doser chairs a meeting of the National Coalition of Classified Education Support Employees (NCCESEU) in Washington, DC. Pictured to her right is Kyle Lierman, Associate Director of the White House Office of Public Engagement, discussing strategies to raise the national profile of school workers.

Other NCCESEU members include representatives from the National Education Association (NEA), California School Employees Association (CSEA), Minnesota School Employees Association (MSEA), SEIU Local 284 (Minnesota), Ohio Association of Public School Employees (OSPSE), and PSE.

Together, the Coalition speaks on behalf of over 1 million school employees across the country!

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Applications for SEIU’s scholarships are available!

Did you know that SEIU awards over 50 scholarships that help PSE/SEIU 1948 members and their children receive education at colleges, universities, labor study programs and technical schools? It’s just another way that unions help working families fulfill their dreams.

Applications for 2015-2016 are now available at seiu.org/scholarships and can be submitted online. The deadline for submissions is March 2, 2015. Winners are notified in late spring and announced on SEIU’s website.

General eligibility criteria:

  • Scholarships are open to SEIU members or their children.
  • Membership must be for three continuous years as of Sept. 1, 2015.
  • Scholarships will be awarded without regard to the sex, race, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, age, or disability of any applicant.
  • All awards must be for the academic year(s) awarded.
  • Graduate students are not eligible.
  • Officers and employees of the International union and their children are not eligible.
  • Scholarship awards are limited to one per household.
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Higher education workers to receive better medical coverage

The Health Care Labor Coalition gathered to discuss proposed benefit changes to the Uniform Medical Plan and updates to the Wellness Program July 1.

There were four changes the Washington State Health Care Authority are planning to make to the Uniform Medical Program that will effect higher education workers.

  1. Six previously excluded procedures will now be covered. Examples are: circumcision was previously uncovered and is now covered with no limitations, massage therapy will cover more than four units when the medical criteria is met, genetic testing, orthotics, and home health have minor changes.
  2. Nine U.S. Preventive Services Task Force service recommendations were implemented. These have to do with such things as alcohol misuse, hepatitis C screening, HIV screening, intimate partner violence screening, tobacco use interventions, lung cancer screening, BRCA (breast, ovarian, tubal or peritoneal) screening.
  3. Pharmacy out of pocket maximum is now limited to $2,000.
  4. A further benefit in three above is that tier 3 generic drugs that don’t work so the Uniform Medical Program member uses a non-generic can now be considered part of the $2,000 limit, and co-pay as long as there is a clinical exception.

Additionally, there was a SmartHealth Wellness update.

The comprehensive and new wellness program known as SmartHealth will be approved by the Public Employee Benefits Board July 23 and go into effect Jan. 1, 2015. This will be an attempt to encourage all agencies and institutions under PEBB to set up wellness plans.

There will be an online portal that will allow each agency and institution to develop their own wellness plans and ensure that they meet the PEBB standards.

Western Washington University was recognized as a state leader in wellness plans. They are one of only five agencies or institutions leading the way on wellness plans. The others are: attorney general office, health care authority, department of retirement systems, and student achievement council.

Nurse Feat

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(From the LA School Report) SEIU to Expand LA Unified Role…

For years, the SEIU Local 99 has been “the other union” in LAUSD. Representing custodians, cooks, bus drivers and other “classified” workers, the union is just as politically influential, if not more so, than the teachers union, UTLA. And yet its voice is rarely heard in policy debates.

That might be about to change.

In a presentation to the LA Unified School Board on Tuesday, SEIU local 99 Executive Director Courtni Pugh laid out a vision to better connect community services to schools. Dubbed OASIS, for Optimizing Access to Services, Inspiring Success,…

To read the full article follow here.

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