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Local 100 Representatives:
Orell Fitzsimmons
Robert Riley
Jewel Williams
Alec Martinez

May 18, 2000 Newsletter

GCCSA Proposes Wage Cuts, Union Says NO!

Recently, GCCSA suggested a wage reduction for over 100 of its employees because of raises that occurred in 1994. They supported their request with a Wage Study of other Harris County Head Start Programs. All three of the other programs have only been in operation for one year, and the Union contented that the comparisons were unfair. The Union suggests a more scientific study be made before any further discussion.

Sunny Side 8 Stand Up For Dorothy Turner

Dorothy Turner, a teacher at Sunnyside was recently put back to work after winning her arbitration. She was accused of child abuse and terminated solely on the word of one five-year old child. The union was able during the arbitration to prove that GCCSA did not do it's own investigation of the alleged abuse. The State Licensing Board's investigation was found to be insufficient in regards to any factual information concerning the abuse allegations. Fortunately, the Union contract mandates that GCCSA is required to prove to an outside arbitrator the reason for termination. It was found that the termination was unjust and that Ms. Turner should be put back to work with back pay. The arbitrator required Ms. Turner to be placed back in her original Head Start Center.

During the arbitration, Head Start Director Gerald Richards was found to be poorly informed and mistaken on certain facts of the case. The most important fact for the Union's case was that eight Union members and Sunnyside employees testified in support of Dorothy Turner. Ms Turner stated,

"...Without the Union, I would have never gotten my job back, and I would have been branded a child abuser the rest of my life. My good name is more important than anything, and the Union protected my good name. If you are not in a Union, you should get in one today."


Two GCCSA Employees Attend SEIU Convention

Bridget Jackson, a Head Start Nurse, and Dorothy Turner, a Teacher at Sunny Side, attended the International Convention in Pittsburgh this May. They heard SEIU President Andy Stern tell a crowd of 7000 members that SEIU had become the largest Union in North America as a result of an increase of 300,000 members in 1999.

Bridget really enjoyed the music of Patty LaBelle and Earth, Wind, and Fire, the two music groups that played at the Convention. Dorothy was impressed with the many different and very friendly people she met at the Convention. She said. "I never knew that SEIU was the largest Union in the country, it really gave me a feeling of power."

Bridget met nurses from all over America since SEIU has organized over 300,000 hospital workers. "If there is one thing I learned by coming to Pittsburgh, its that when people come together for one idea or goal they sure have a better chance of reaching that goal than if they try to get there alone." she said.