Strike Called Off; City and SEA Reach Last Minute Deal

The strike by city workers called for today, May 1, has been called off, due to a last-minute agreement between the Sunnyvale Employees Association (SEA) and Sunnyvale City Council. Details of the settlement have not yet been announced.

Via the Mercury News:

The SEA announced the tentative agreement in an e-mail at 3:18 a.m. Monday, saying its members have canceled the strike. Details surrounding the agreement were not immediately made public; union leaders are waiting to present the details to workers.

In an e-mailed statement, Sunnyvale Mayor Glenn Hendricks said: “We are extremely proud of the work our employees do every day and believe our city services are second to none. This agreement means those services won’t be unnecessarily interrupted during work stoppages. We are also very grateful to Supervisor Chavez for getting the two sides together to facilitate the deal.”

Sunnyvale Employees to Strike May 1

The City of Sunnyvale has issued a Press Release confirming that city staff affiliated with the Sunnyvale Employees Union (SEA) will be on strike May 1.

Key takeaways:

  • Police, Fire, Garbage Services are not impacted
  • Parks, Library, Recreational, and Development Services will be limited or unavailable

During a strike, police, fire, dispatcher and EMT services will not be impacted; garbage collection also will not be interrupted. But many other services will not be available or limited to weekend-level staffing. Services at the Library, Community Center and Senior Center will be limited for the duration of the strike. There will be no counter service for City departments, including the City’s One-Stop Permit Center. Regular road service crews will not be in service, but emergency crews will be on standby and be available on an as-needed basis.

Labor negotiations have been ongoing since 2015, and a strike was authorized by union membership this Tuesday, April 25. Residents are advised to visit the city’s website for additional updates: http://sunnyvale.ca.gov/

Sunnyvale City Employees Vote to Strike

The Sunnyvale Employees Association (SEA) is a labor union representing about 485 city employees.  The union has been in contract negotiations with the City of Sunnyvale since their previous contract expired in 2015. Negotiations have been at an impasse since June 2016, when the City issued its “final offer” of a 10% wage increase over 15 months. The union seeks a 17% increase, 4% of which would be retroactive while offering to increase employee retirement contributions.

SEA Strike Vote

Strike Vote and ballot.
Source: Kori Thompson

On Tuesday, 98% of union members voted to strike. On Wednesday, the city requested a court injunction to require essential workers to stay on the job, including water pollution control plant operators, environmental chemists, water and sewer plant crew leaders, landfill technicians, public safety records specialists and fire department fleet mechanics.

The SEA represents blue-collar and white-collar employees, including planners, engineers, mechanics, clerks, accountants, and technicians. Public safety, teachers, and solid waste collection would not be impacted by a strike.

UPDATE: there are conflicting media reports as to what the union in asking, ranging from 14% to 17%. This article has been revised to cite figures from The Mercury News.