Logan County Health Department wins healthy new contract
They battled through a pandemic at their walk-in immunization clinic. Their health inspectors steadfastly made sure public health guidelines were followed throughout the county. All across the board, members of Local 1277 in the Logan County Health Department made sure that the public health needs of their community were met while the coronavirus pandemic raged on.
Now the workers have a new contract that rewards them for all the good work they’ve done throughout the public health crisis. The new agreement gives members an average wage increase in the first year of the contract of 13.1%, with some as high 18.8%. Over the life of the four-year contract, members in the bargaining unit will have received a 21% wage increase on average.
Local 1277 President Dana Oltmanns has worked at the Logan County Health Department for 37 years and was one of the founding members of her union almost 20 years ago. She’s worked on contracts that have moved like molasses. This time around, they had a management team that was willing to engage with their union.
“It just makes the employees feel more respected by the administration and the Board of Health when they’re willing to not drag this out over a long period of time,” Oltmanns said.
Local 1277 is a small local with only 20 represented employees. Sometimes in the past, management has stepped in to fill in on jobs that otherwise should have been done by union members. This new contract also makes clear the union’s right to decide if and when management can step in.
The bargaining team was led by Council 31 Staff Representative Erik Hostetter and included Oltmanns, Vice President Cindy Harrelson and former President Lewis Allison.