1199 SEIU-Represented Health Care Workers At Community Health Center Of Buffalo ‘Unanimously Ratify’ Three-Year Agreement - Highlights Include Yearly Raises, Creation Of Labor-Management & Health And Safety Committees
(BUFFALO, NEW YORK) – 1199 Service Employees International Union (SEIU) United Healthcare Workers East-represented Employees at Community Health Center of Buffalo have unanimously ratified a new three-year contract that features, among other things, yearly raises and the creation of a Labor-Management and Health and Safety Committees.
Workers had bargained for three months in late Winter and were finally able to reach an agreement in early February, but the contract vote was delayed due to COVID-19.
The agreement covers 60 Health Care Professionals working as Physician Assistants (PAs), Registered Nurses (RNs), Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs), Social Workers, Certified Dental Assistants, Registration Clerks, Medical Record Clerks, Medical Office Assistants, Billing Clerks, Dental Hygienists, Unit Clerks and Patient Service Representatives.
The three-year deal runs from February 1st (2020) until January 31st, 2023 and includes: Yearly raises; Establishes a Labor-Management Committee; a Health and Safety Committee; Paid Personal Days; A Tuition Assistance Program; and better employer contributions to a 401k pension plan.
And, if Community Health Center expands to new locations in the future, new hires automatically become Unionized Labor.
Community Health Center is a Federally-qualified Health Center providing health care services on a sliding scale basis. Their 1199 SEIU-represented Employees work at multiple clinics that are located in Buffalo, Suburban Cheektowaga, and in the Cities of Niagara Falls and Lockport in Niagara County.
A Union Contract gives Health Care Workers a sense of security during the COVID-19 Pandemic, says LPN Stephanie Fuller: “Our clinic provides services to the under-served community of the greater Buffalo Area. We provide health care services for adults and children. Our Union Contract and the benefits we secured for the next three years ‘will ease some worries for many of my Co-Workers especially during the pandemic.’ ‘We are essential and will continue to provide the best care to our patients at each site.’”
Medical Assistant Rosa Goggins knows the contract will benefit patients the 1199 SEIU-represented Workers serve in the community: “When our patients ‘see familiar faces, they are more receptive to care that we provide.’ The wage increase ‘will definitely help us to retain Staff and continue to provide quality care for our community.’”
1199 SEIU represents more than 50,000 Nursing Home Workers in New York State, including 5,000 here in Western New York, who are employed at more than 30 facilities.