Changing our workplaces, on conversation at a time

Since October, members of AFSCME Local 4041 have been at the bargaining table negotiating our first contract as Nevada state employees.  

But not all state employees are represented at the bargaining table. To be included in negotiations, workers in some bargaining units still need to certify reach majority and get certified as AFSCME. To get there, AFSCME members are taking time to talk to their co-workers.  

“I’ve been talking to my co-workers, many who I don’t normally talk to throughout the workday, because if we want to see improvements in our workplace, we need a contract. The only way us workers in the welfare offices will have a contract is if our co-workers join us as AFSCME members. I’m surprised by how easy it is to have these conversations, because so many people really do want to see changes,” said Jolene Porter, an administrative assistant at Welfare Support Services.  

By becoming an AFSCME member, state workers are building the power and strength needed to have a successful first contract.  

A majority of workers joining together is needed to certify our bargaining unit and take our seat at the bargaining table, but we are building so much more than that. In having a strong union, we are building a community within our workplace. We spend so much time at work, building a community will make our days more enjoyable but also allow us to work together to accomplish the same goals: improve our workplace and improve state services.” said Jolene 

Having a seat at the bargaining table and a contract changes the balance of power in the workplace, allowing workers to have more say in working conditions.  

“I’m committed to talking to my co-workers because we have an opportunity to change the balance of power in the workplace. When workers are empowered, we will be treated with respect at work and can create a workplace where everyone is treated fairly,” said Jolene.