At first glance, it might appear that OCSEA members Nick Anthony and Connie Sims are worlds a part. Nick's a relatively new employee with the Dept. of Health and Connie is a 27-year employee with the Dept. of Education.
But they do have this one thing in common: They both signed a Solidarity Pledge Card to support OCSEA’s bargaining team. And both won laptop computers for doing so!
OCSEA is starting early to collect Pledge Cards for its upcoming contract negotiations with the state. Information on the Pledge Cards will be used to keep members up to date on bargaining news. Typically bargaining gets underway at the end of the year. The bargaining team will be elected at the Bargaining Council meeting on July 8. Any member in good standing can run for the bargaining team.
Nick is an Electronic Technician and works on the MARCs system for hospitals and nursing homes overseen by ODH. He says one of his main concerns in OCSEA’s upcoming state contract is maintaining a good vision benefit. Like him, his wife and two children also wear prescription glasses. “I don’t just have one, I have four sets of glasses to buy,” he said.
The Union Benefits Trust is staffed by OCSEA employees and administers the vision, dental and life insurance benefits for all state employee bargaining unit members. The benefits are free to OCSEA members and requires no monthly premium. Anthony became eligible for the benefits last year on his one-year work anniversary.
For Connie, she says she’d like to see more money, but if that’s not possible, a more flexible schedule. Sims explains she doesn’t utilize the union-negotiated health care benefit since she’s under her husband’s benefit plan.
Three raffle prizes will continue to be given away each week at least through March 1 to members who sign Pledge Cards and fill in their contact information.
If you have not received a Pledge Card, please contact your union leadership.