Missouri

Minimum wage law takes effect in St. Louis, May 5 [VIDEO]

St. Louis PresserST. LOUIS, MO (KTVI) – An ordinance setting the City of St. Louis’ minimum wage to $10 takes effect Friday, May 5. According to a news release, the Circuit Court lifted its injunction that previously blocked the ordinance from becoming law. The minimum wage will rise to $11 beginning January 1, 2018.

Watch the full video, which includes an interview with Local 1 janitor Cynthia Sanders, over at Fox 2 News.

If you have any questions about the minimum wage increase, please call the Member Resource Center at (877) 233-8880, Monday – Friday, between 9am and 5pm. We want to work with you to make sure you can receive the raises you’re owed.

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St. Louis minimum wage increase takes effect Friday

STL FlagST. LOUIS – St. Louis City will raise its minimum wage to $10 an hour as the clock strikes midnight May 5. Circuit Judge Steven Ohmer lifted the injunction on the city ordinance that will bring the wage increase into effect.

The bill will eventually cap out at $11/hour as of Jan. 1 , 2018.

Minimum wage workers, like Richard Bullion of the Service Employees International Union, celebrated the announcement Friday.

“Too many working people in St. Louis need to take a second job just to keep our head above water. Between bills, food, and rent, there’s not much left at the end of the day,” Bullion, a janitor for 25 years, said. “We need to make sure working families can make a living, and raising the minimum wage will go a long way towards making that a reality. The janitors, higher education faculty, and public sector workers of SEIU Local 1 thank Mayor Lyda Krewson for implementing this law. We fought long and hard for this victory.”

This is a huge victory for the working families of St. Louis! Read the full story over at The Missouri Times.

 

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VICTORY: St. Louis Minimum Wage Increase

St. Louis PresserAfter an over two-year fight, the minimum wage in St. Louis city rose to $10 on May 5 and will rise to $11 dollars on January 1, 2018. If you work in St. Louis city and make less than $10 an hour, your wages should have gone up to $10 an hour.

It’s the activism of SEIU Local 1 members that pushed St. Louis to raise the wage for working people, and raising the minimum wage is the first step in making our economy better for working families. By keeping our union strong, we make progress together for a brighter future. 

If you have any questions about the minimum wage increase, please call the Member Resource Center at (877) 233-8880, Monday – Friday, between 9am and 5pm. We want to work with you to make sure you can receive the raises you’re owed.

Local 1 janitor Cynthia Sanders spoke with Fox 2 News about how raising the wage will boost our communities. Click here to check it out!

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SLU adjuncts finalize their first union contract

5743704552ae5.image ST. LOUIS • St. Louis University leaders and members of the Service Employees International Union have tentatively agreed on the first contract for adjunct faculty in the College of Arts and Sciences and School of Education.

The contract is still pending approval from union members within the next week.

The five-year contract comes more than a year after the SLU adjunct professors voted to unionize. Out of 156 eligible voters, 89 voted in favor back in March of 2016, and 28 voted against it.

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Mayor Slay, advocates gear up for minimum wage fight

589b69c474dff.imageJEFFERSON CITY •St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay made his way to the state Capitol on Monday to speak out against legislation that would block the city’s minimum wage increase, which the Missouri Supreme Court upheld last week.

His fourth and final term as the city’s chief executive may be quickly coming to a close – the primary election for his job is on Tuesday – but raising the St. Louis minimum wage to $11 an hour by 2018 remains a potentially elusive goal.

“We’re going to stand firm,” Slay said Monday. “We’re going to fight this thing all the way through.”

The city raised its minimum wage in 2015, but was quickly sued by business groups who said the ordinance conflicted with state law.

The state’s high court may have sided with the city, but celebrations proved to be short-lived. Less than a week later, advocates and city lawmakers are testifying against proposals from state lawmakers that would nullify St. Louis’ increase and ban other cities from doing the same.

Slay joins other advocates, including some of the state’s labor unions, to denounce the Legislature’s involvement in city politics.

United Food and Commercial Workers Local 655 and Service Employees International Union Local 1 are partnering to campaign against proposals banning cities from raising the minimum wage beyond state levels.

Read the full story over at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch!

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Missouri Gov. Greitens signs right-to-work legislation

greitens_rtw_signing_3Gov. Eric Greitens took a road trip Monday in celebration of making Missouri the nation’s 28th right-to-work state.

The Republican signed Senate Bill 19, which bars unions and employers from requiring workers to pay dues, at three ceremonies. The first one was in Springfield at an abandoned warehouse before a small crowd of supporters.

“For too long in the state of Missouri, for too long people bowed down to intimidation, they bowed down to powerful union bosses who acted to protect their own interests instead of protecting the interest of Missouri workers,” Greitens said.

The ceremony was disrupted briefly by about 10 pro-union demonstrators who shouted “right to work, wrong for us!” They were escorted out a minute later.

Greitens said the new law won’t eliminate unions but instead will make them more responsive and accountable to their members.

Organized labor says the legislation will lead to lower wages and have an uncertain impact on economic growth.

“It’s sad to see Gov. Greitens and the Republican legislature cave to big donors, corporations and special interests at the expense of Missouri’s working families,” said Vanessa Coleman with the Service Employees International Union. “The janitors, higher education faculty, school cafeteria workers, and sports facility workers of SEIU Local 1 will continue to fight for an economy that works for all of us, not just well-connected and out-of-touch billionaires.”

Read the full story over at St. Louis Public Radio!

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: SEIU Local 1 Member and Kauffman Stadium Concessions Worker Vanessa Coleman Responds to Governor Greitens’ Signing of “Right to Work” Law

IMG_1013SEIU Local 1 Member and Kauffman Stadium Concessions Worker Vanessa Coleman Responds to Governor Greitens’ Signing of “Right to Work” Law

KANSAS CITY – The following is a statement from Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 1 member and Kauffman Stadium Concessions Worker Vanessa Coleman:

“It’s sad to see Governor Greitens and the Republican legislature cave to big donors, corporations and special interests at the expense of Missouri’s working families.

“But our movement for a fair economy is growing – just last year, Kansas City Public School custodians, janitors at Lambert St. Louis International Airport, and St. Louis higher education faculty joined the fight for a voice on the job, higher wages, and a brighter future.

“The janitors, higher education faculty, school cafeteria workers, and sports facility workers of SEIU Local 1 will continue to fight for an economy that works for all of us, not just well-connected and out-of-touch billionaires.”

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SEIU Local 1 represents over 8,000 janitors, higher education faculty, public sector workers, school custodians and industrial workers across Missouri. Together, SEIU Local 1 members fight an economy that works for all working families, not just the wealthy and well-connected. 

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: SEIU Local 1 Member and SLU professor Jameson Ramirez on the Passage of SB19

SEIU Local 1 Member and SLU professor Jameson Ramirez on the Passage of SB19

ST. LOUIS– The following is a statement from SEIU Local 1 member and Saint Louis University higher education faculty member Jameson Ramirez: 

“Last year, higher education faculty at Saint Louis University joined together to fight for a voice on the job and a seat at the table. Higher education faculty in St. Louis show that when we are united under a common cause and organize for a better future, we win.

“But so-called Right to Work makes it more difficult for working people to make themselves heard.  This proposed legislation essentially extends a false hand of opportunity to workers while strangling their real opportunities with the other hand. It will lower wages, slash benefits, and put a secure retirement out of reach for thousands of hardworking Missouri families. The simple fact is Right to Work means less money in my pocket every month – median incomes in Right to Work states are thousands less than in those without it.

“We hope Governor Greitens shows that he is truly fighting for the working people of Missouri and vetoes this harmful bill. If not, we’ll know he caved to the special interests, billionaire donors and big corporations that bankrolled his campaign.”

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SEIU Local 1 represents over 8,000 janitors, higher education faculty, public sector workers, school custodians and industrial workers across Missouri. Together, SEIU Local 1 members fight an economy that works for all working families, not just the wealthy and well-connected. 

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Right to Work bill heads to governor’s desk

635586855870111919-missouri-capitol-by-rick-meyer_174730_ver1.0JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) – Missouri lawmakers have sent the state’s new Republican governor a bill that would ban mandatory union fees.

House members on Thursday took a final vote on the so-called right-to-work bill.

Gov. Eric Greitens has promised to sign the bill. His Democratic predecessor, Gov. Jay Nixon, vetoed right to work in 2015.

If Greitens signs the bill, Missouri will become the 28th right-to-work state.

Seven of the eight states that surround Missouri already have right-to-work laws, including Kentucky where it passed last month. New Hampshire lawmakers are considering a similar proposal.

Reactions from politicians and organizations across the state has been mixed.

“Missouri has lagged in job creation and economic growth. Today we took a big step toward turning that around,” said State Senator Bob Onder (R-St. Charles County).

He added, “Right to Work will really send a signal to all of our country that Missouri is open for business, That we’re open to opportunity, economic development, and economic freedom.”

“We believe this is an overreach by government, to go after working people,” said Jeff Aboussie, a labor lobbyist for the Operating Engineers Union for the state of Missouri.

“The uncertainty is there and [the union members] have no idea what’s coming or what to expect or how its going to change their lives and their families lives.”

Statement from SEIU Local 1 member and SLU professor Jameson Ramirez:

“We hope Governor Greitens shows that he is truly fighting for the working people of Missouri and vetoes this harmful bill. If not, we’ll know he caved to the special interests, billionaire donors and big corporations that bankrolled his campaign.”

Read the full story over at KSDK.

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Kansas City Public Schools janitors vote to join union

KCPS janitorJanitors who work in Kansas City Public Schools have voted to join a union.

The union vote came earlier this month, when 90 custodians elected to join the Service Employees International Union Local 1, which represents more than 300 workers in the district.

The custodians work for the Marcis & Associates janitorial services firm, which earlier this year won a $10 million, three-year contract with the school district.

Union members had supported the district’s decision to give the contract to a new company, saying the previous firm did not recognize union workers and that schools had seen a decline in cleanliness amid understaffing.

Velma Chapman, a custodian at Lincoln College Preparatory Academy, said in a statement from the union that the custodians will be better able to care for the schools as members of SEIU Local 1.

“My coworkers and I came together on the job so we could have a voice in keeping KCPS as clean and healthy as possible,” Chapman said.

Read the full story over at the Kansas City Star!

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