The second RWDSU contract for Urban Strategies members will bring workers into the Local 108 health plan.
When workers at Urban Strategies, a housing complex in New Jersey, joined RWDSU Local 108 in early 2007, they did so to win a voice at work, and the wage increases, benefits, and protections that come with union membership. On October 8, the custodians and superintendents at the complex ratified their second RWDSU contract, and won more wage increases and benefit improvements. Wages will increase four percent each year of the three-year pact, and workers with 10 years of service will receive an additional two percent increase annually.
In addition to the pay increases, workers will now automatically be enrolled in the Local 108 health benefits expense plan for single coverage. The single coverage benefit will be paid 100 percent by the employer, and employees will have an opportunity to buy into the plan’s affordable family coverage.
“The highlight of the contract for me, apart from the pay increases, is that workers who could not afford the employers health benefit plan can now join the union's health plan,” said Urban Strategies employee and Shop Steward Camel Stapleton. “This will make a huge difference in the lives of many Urban Strategies workers.”
“This contract was our second bite at the apple, and things are getting better for Urban Strategies workers,” said Local 108 Secretary-Treasurer Jorge Semidey. “These workers are living proof that joining a union can change lives for the better.”
Serving on the negotiating committee were Local 108 President Charles N. Hall, Jr., Semidey, Stapleton, and Frank Rodriguez.