As almost every improvement in the condition of working people has been accomplished by the efforts of organized labor and as the welfare of workers can best be protected and advanced by their united action in one International Union, we have organized Local 888 of the Service Employees International Union and have adopted the following Constitution.
SEIU MISSION STATEMENT
We are the Service Employees International Union, an organization of more than one million members united by belief in the dignity and worth of workers and the services they provide and dedicated to improving the lives of workers and their families and creating a more just and humane society.
We are public workers, service workers, health care workers, property services workers, office workers, professional workers, and industrial and allied workers. We seek a stronger union to build power for ourselves and to protect the people we serve.
People of every race, ethnicity, country, religion, age, physical ability, gender, gender expression and sexual orientation, we are the standard-bearers in the struggle for social and economic justice begun nearly a century ago by janitors who dared to dream beyond their daily hardship and to organize for economic security, dignity and respect.
Our vision is of a society:
Where all workers and their families live and work with dignity and respect;
Where work is fulfilling and fairly rewarded;
Where workers have a meaningful voice in decisions that affect them;
Where workers have the opportunity to develop their talents and skills;
Where the collective voice and power of workers is realized in democratic and progressive unions;
Where union solidarity stands firm against the forces of discrimination and hate and the unfair employment practices of exploitative employers;
Where government plays an active role in improving the lives of working people.
To achieve this vision:
We must organize unorganized workers, extending to them the gains of unionization while securing control over our industries and labor markets.
We must build political power to ensure that workers’ voices are heard at every level of government to create economic opportunity and foster social justice.
We must provide meaningful paths for member involvement and participation in strong, democratic unions.
We must develop highly trained and motivated leaders at every level of the union who reflect the membership in all its diversity.
We must bargain contracts that improve wages and working conditions, expand the role of workers in workplace decision-making, and build a stronger union.
We must build coalitions and act in solidarity with other organizations who share our concern for social and economic justice.
We must engage in direct action that demonstrates our power and our determination to win.
To accomplish these goals we must be unified – inspired by a set of beliefs and principles that transcends our social and occupational diversity and guides our work. We believe we can accomplish little as separate individuals, but that together we have the power to create a just society.
We believe unions are the means by which working people build power – by which ordinary people accomplish extraordinary things.
We believe our strength comes from our unity, and that we must not be divided by forces of discrimination based on gender, race, ethnicity, religion, age, physical ability, sexual orientation or immigration status.
We believe our power and effectiveness depends upon the active participation and commitment of our members, the development of our leaders, and solidarity with each other and our allies.
We believe we have a special mission to bring economic and social justice to those most exploited in our community – especially to women and workers of color.
We believe our future cannot be separated from that of workers in other parts of the world who struggle for economic justice, a decent life for their families, peace, dignity, and democracy.
We believe unions are necessary for a democratic society to prevail, and that unions must participate in the political life of our society.
We believe we have a moral responsibility to leave the world a better place for our children – and everyone’s children.
Article 1: NAME
This organization shall be known as the Service Employees International Union, Local 888 (SEIU Local 888).
Article 2: OBJECTS AND PURPOSES
SEIU Local 888 is a union of members founded on the vision of representing workers as full human beings and on encouraging society to respect such a vision. Our goal is to reach a balanced work and personal life. Our chosen name, SEIU Local 888, reflects a symbol for a balanced life: 8 hours of labor, 8 hours of recreation, and 8 hours of rest.
The objects and purposes of this Local Union shall be to benefit its members and improve their conditions by every means, including but not limited to:
A. By organizing and uniting in this Local Union all working men and women eligible for membership herein;
B. By securing of economic advantages, including better wages, hours and working conditions, through organization, collective bargaining, legislative and political action, and the utilization of other lawful means;
C. By engaging in all such civic, social, political, legal, economic, cultural, educational, charitable, and other activities, whether on local, national, or international levels, as will advance this Local Union’s standing in the community and in the labor movement and further the interests of this organization and its membership, directly or indirectly;
D. By advancing and strengthening the rights of working men and women to bargain collectively;
E. By providing benefits and advantages to individual union members, officers, and employees through education, training, access to new technology, and other benefits;
F. By sharing experiences, pooling resources, learning from each other’s best practices, and being accountable to each other;
G. By cooperating with and assisting, by moral, monetary or other means, other labor organizations, whether or not affiliated with this Local Union, or any other groups or organizations, having objectives which are in any way related or similar to those of this Local Union, or which are of a nature beneficial to this Local Union or to its members, directly or indirectly;
H. By strengthening and safeguarding this Local Union by every lawful means so that it may carry on its purposes, objects and obligations;
I. By utilizing, in every lawful way, including but not limited to every kind of use, expenditure and investment, the property and funds of this Local Union, in order to achieve its objectives and perform its obligations, and for such other purposes directly or indirectly furthering the interests of this Local Union and its members; and
J. By affiliating workers in independent organizations through agreements which recognize the long history, unique needs and traditions, and successes of such organizations, and making every effort possible to provide such organizations the same types of services which have benefited our existing members.
Article 3: JURISDICTION AND MEMBERSHIP
This Local Union shall have jurisdiction as granted and approved by the SEIU.
The Local shall be affiliated with the Service Employees International Union, the appropriate SEIU Division, and such other bodies as the International Union shall from time to time establish. It shall follow all of the requirements contained in the International’s Constitution and Bylaws, including with respect to duties of officers and requirements pertaining to dues and collective bargaining agreements.
A. Eligibility for Membership
Any person who desires to become a member of this Local Union must truthfully and completely fill out the regular application and sign his/her full name hereto. To become a member of the Local Union entitled to rights, privileges and benefits thereof, an applicant shall pay such dues as may be established by the Local. All persons, without regard to race, creed, color, religion, sex, gender expression, sexual orientation, national origin, citizenship status, marital status, ancestry, age, language spoken, or disability, who are employed within the jurisdiction of this Local Union shall be eligible to become and remain members. Current Local 888 Officers and any person employed in any employment over which SEIU Local 888 claims or exercises jurisdiction shall be eligible for membership in this Local Union. Other International and Local Union staff shall be eligible for membership but are not eligible to run for any elected Local Union position.
B. Categories of Membership
Section 1 – Regular Members
A Regular Member is a person: a) who is working; b) laid-off for a period of not more than one year; or c) on appropriate leave from work within the jurisdiction of the Local Union as defined in the Constitution. These people shall be eligible for membership in the Local Union without regard to race, creed, color, religion, sex, gender expression, sexual orientation, national origin, citizenship status, marital status, ancestry, age, language spoken, or disability. Current Local 888 officers, International and Local Union Officers and staff are also eligible to be Regular Members. A member who has been terminated from his or her employment and has a grievance or civil service hearing pending shall be eligible to be a regular member.
Section 2 – Retired Members
Any person who has worked under a Local 888 contract or who has worked under a contract of another SEIU Local Union in a unit which is now part of Local 888 shall be eligible for membership as a Retired Member provided such person is not currently employed within the jurisdiction of the Local Union as a manager, non-bargaining unit supervisor or other management position. Retired members have the option to maintain membership in Local 888 and to pay less than the full dues required for working members of the Local Union. Retired Members shall not be eligible to nominate or run for Local Union office, including Steward, Officer or Executive Board Member, nor shall they be entitled to vote on agreements that apply to representation units, nor shall Retired Members have any other voting rights.
Section 3 – Self-Employed Members
Self-employed individuals doing work within the jurisdiction of the International Union may be eligible for membership in this Local Union, subject to any additional requirements provided for by the Executive Board. They shall not be eligible for election as Executive Officers of the Local nor shall they be permitted to vote on acceptance or rejection of proposed collective bargaining agreements to cover conditions of employment other than their own. The International President shall have the right to make all necessary rules and regulations respecting self-employed workers, under the jurisdiction of the International Union.
Section 4 – Associate Members
An Associate Member must be an individual who is not part of a bargaining unit for which the local is the exclusive bargaining agent and is part of a group or an individual which has been approved by the Executive Board as being eligible for Associate Membership. Associate Members will be allowed to attend membership meetings, as the Executive Board deems appropriate, but shall have neither voting rights at such meetings nor the right to nominate or run for Union office. The Executive Board will determine the benefits and privileges applicable to Associate Members. An Associate Member’s annual fee shall be established by the Executive Board in accordance with the International Union’s Associate Member Program or as otherwise established by the Executive Board of the Local.
C. Rights and Responsibilities
Every member by virtue of his/her membership in this Local Union is obligated to adhere to and follow the terms of the SEIU Local 888 Constitution and of the International Constitution, and the working rules promulgated in accordance with this Constitution with respect to his/her rights, duties, privileges and immunities conferred by them and by statute. Each member shall faithfully carry out such duties and obligations and shall not interfere with the rights of fellow members.
Every member, by virtue of his/her membership in this Local Union authorizes this Local Union to act as his/her exclusive bargaining representative with full and exclusive power to execute agreements with his/her employer governing terms and conditions of employment and to act for him/her and have final authority in representing, processing and adjusting any grievance.
In addition to the above, Regular Members have the right to:
1. Receive timely and accurate information about the Local and its activities and agree to keep the Local updated as to their current home address;
2. Elect their Union steward and Union officers in accordance with this Constitution;
3. Help build the Union by participating in its programs;
4. Appeal a decision not to process a grievance under the provisions of this Constitution;
5. Nominate candidates for Union office, vote in Union elections, and participate in Union meetings; to choose the leaders of the Union in a fair and democratic manner;
6. Have opinions expressed, heard and respected; to be informed of Union activity; to be educated in union values and union skills;
7. A full accounting of Union finances and the proper stewardship over Union resources;
8. Receive or to inspect their collective bargaining agreements; the right to participate in their chapter’s bargaining efforts and to approve their chapter’s contract;
9. Participate fully in the work of the Union;
10. Have union members’ concerns resolved in a fair and expeditious manner;
11. Meet and assemble freely with other members.
Regular Members have the responsibility to:
1. Help build a strong and more effective labor movement, to support the organizing of the unorganized workers, to help build a political voice for working people, and to stand up for one’s co-workers and for all workers;
2. Be informed about the governance of the Union and to participate in the conduct of the Union affairs;
3. Contribute to the support of the Union;
4. Treat all co-workers and Union members fairly;
5. Participate in the Union efforts to establish and uphold collective principles and values of effective workplace participation;
6. Recognize, respect, and uphold the interests of all Union members when making decision about Union goals;
7. Be informed about the industry in which one works and about the forces that affect the working conditions in that industry; and
8. Participate fully in the union’s efforts to expand the voice of workers on the job.
No member shall engage in dual unionism or disaffiliation from SEIU.
Any member who commits any offense which might bring the Local Union into discredit or who works against the interest and harmony of the Local Union or who aids a rival union or who fraudulently receives or misappropriates the money of any member or applicant for membership entrusted to him/her for payment to the Local Union or who acts in violation of existing Labor agreements or any of the articles or provisions of this Constitution or of the International Union Constitution and Bylaws or who acts in a profane and disorderly manner at meetings or who attempts individually to bargain with his/her employer in contradiction of an existing labor agreement shall upon being so charged, be tried in accordance with the provisions dealing with Charges, Trials and Appeals set forth in this Constitution and the International Union Constitution and Bylaws.
Any member may bring charges against another member for reasons set forth in this Local Union’s Constitution and Bylaws or in the International Union’s Constitution and Bylaws and pursuant to the procedures provided for in this Local Union’s Constitution and Bylaws.
A member in good standing is defined as a member whose membership dues are current and paid on time.
All regular members in good standing shall have the right to, for the contract under which they work, participate in the formulation of proposals for collective bargaining, have a representative group of affected members form a bargaining committee and vote on any strike, if applicable, and the ratification of negotiated contracts under which they work.
D. Discrimination Forbidden
Section 1 – No member shall discriminate or advocate discrimination against any other member on the basis of race, creed, color, religion, sex, gender expression, sexual orientation, national origin, citizenship status, marital status, ancestry, age, language spoken, or disability.
Section 2 – All members have the right to exercise all rights under these bylaws free of coercion, force, or violence. In addition, neither the Local Union nor any of its officials shall fine, expel or otherwise discipline a member for exercising his or her rights under these bylaws.
Article 4: OFFICERS
The Officers of the Union shall be a President acting on a full-time basis, a Secretary-Treasurer, and a Recording Secretary. All Officers serve on the Executive Board. All are elected state-wide by mail ballot for three-year terms.
Every Officer, agent or other representative of the Local who handles funds or other property of the Local shall be bonded for the discharge of their duties in conformity with the requirements of any applicable law.
The President shall be a Regular Member and is elected by the Regular Members at large to serve as the Local Union’s Chief Executive Officer on a full-time basis. It shall be the President’s duty to administer the affairs of the Local Union and to implement the policies of the Local Union on a day-to-day basis. This includes but is not limited to the following duties:
1. To function as the Chief Executive of the Local and s/he shall have authority to act in all matters not otherwise expressly delegated;
2. To serve as the representative and chief spokesperson of SEIU Local 888 in any dealings with employers, other unions, including other SEIU Local Unions, the federal, state and local governments and agencies, the media and the public;
3. To have general supervision of the work of the Local; hire, set compensation, fire and direct the staff employed by the Union; and lead the day-to-day administration of the Local in accordance with these bylaws; and to assign additional duties to the Officers as s/he may deem necessary;
4. To sign all agreements and co-sign checks on behalf of the Union. The President shall sign all official documents and shall sign all collective bargaining agreements on behalf of the Local and may delegate such power to other Officers of the Local;
5. To call meetings and to preside over all such meetings;
6. To have the deciding vote in case of a tie on any question;
7. To appoint trial bodies to hear internal union charges against Local 888 members. Whenever the President has reason to believe that, in order to protect the interests of the membership within each Chapter, it is necessary to appoint a Trustee for the purpose of correcting corruption or financial malpractice, assuring the performance of collective bargaining agreements or other duties of a bargaining representative, restoring democratic procedures, or otherwise carrying out the legitimate objectives of this union, s/he may appoint such Trustee to temporarily take charge and control of the affairs of a Chapter or affiliated body;
8. To enlist members in the work of building the Union, including appointing all boards and committees and being an ex-officio member of same;
9. To make a full report to each Union-Wide Convention and at Executive Board meetings.
The President shall have the authority to make changes to the budget during the year as necessitated by the Local Union’s income, expenses and programmatic needs, provided that the President reports such changes to the Executive Board and the Executive Board approves such changes.
The Secretary-Treasurer shall be a Regular Member and shall be elected by the Regular members at-large. The Local Secretary-Treasurer’s duties shall include:
1. To function as the Chief Financial Officer of the Union with responsibilities for managing, maintaining, and reporting on the books and records of the union;
2. To counter-sign checks. No check shall be issued from the Local unless properly authorized, and signed by both the Local President and the Local Secretary/Treasurer;
3. To recommend and monitor the Local’s annual budget and to prepare and submit to the Executive Board an annual financial report and such other additional reports as the Executive Board may require;
4. To perform such other duties as assigned by the Local President.
In case of the death or disability of the President, the Secretary-Treasurer shall assume the powers of the President, serving out the remainder of the term.
The Recording Secretary shall be a Regular Member and shall be elected by the Regular members at-large. The Local Recording Secretary’s duties shall include:
1. To keep a correct and accurate record of proceedings of all regular and special Executive Board and union-wide meetings of the Local, in coordination with the Local Union staff.
2. To perform such other duties as assigned by the Local President.
Article 5: EXECUTIVE BOARD
The Executive Board shall consist of the three (3) Officers and eighteen (18) Executive Board Members. These eighteen Executive Board Members shall be Regular Members and shall be elected by the Regular Members at large. All are elected statewide by mail ballot for three year terms.
No more than one (1) member from any one Employer shall serve as an Executive Board Member at the same time. This limitation shall be increased from one (1) to two (2) members for any Employer with more than 700 members.
The Executive Board is the governing body of the Local Union elected every three (3) years. The Executive Board is authorized and empowered to take all lawful action consistent with the Constitution of the Local Union. At the time of nomination and during his or her entire term of office, every Board Member and Officer shall meet the qualifications set forth in the qualification section of the Nomination Article and in the International Union’s Constitution and Bylaws unless waived by the President of the International Union.
The Executive Board shall meet at least quarterly.
A majority of the Executive Board members shall constitute a quorum for doing business.
Executive Board Members shall have the following duties:
1. To be the top policy body between union-wide conventions and shall have the authority to take such steps it determines are needed to insure that the Local shall be able to meet its obligations;
2. To establish the general policies of the Local Union and to oversee implementation of those policies;
3. To hold broad oversight on Local Union operations, budget and financial management;
4. To establish the compensation for the full-time President of the Local Union consistent with the annual budget;
5. To receive and act upon reports of Officers;
6. To approve and authorize the disbursement of such funds of the Local as in its discretion may be required for organization and administration purposes in order to promote the aims and objectives of the Local;
7. To interpret the bylaws. Such interpretations shall be final, binding and conclusive and shall remain in full force and effect, unless revised, modified or otherwise changed by union-wide convention;
8. To formulate plans, programs and policies;
9. To fill vacancies that occur pending elections;
10. To play a key role in connecting the Union to Chapters and to members.
Article 6: TRUSTEES
There shall be three Trustees, who shall report to the Executive Board. Trustees are not Members of the Executive Board, but may serve as ex-officio Members. All Trustees shall be Regular Members and shall be elected by the Regular Members at large by mail ballot for three-year terms.
No more than one (1) member from any one Employer shall serve as Trustee at the same time.
The Trustees shall have the following duties:
1. To approve a yearly audit of the Local’s finances conducted by the accountants immediately following the close of each fiscal year, and at such other times as the President or the Executive Board shall deem necessary;
2. To provide copies of the statement of condition and of the annual audit report to the Executive Board and to have available for distribution to the members;
3. To perform such other duties as are usually incidental to their office.
Article 7: NOMINATIONS AND ELECTIONS
The term of office for the Officers and Executive Board Members of the Local Union shall be three (3) years. The term of office for Trustees shall run concurrent with the term of office for the Officers and Executive Board Members, and shall be elected using the same timelines and procedures.
All Officers, Board Members, and Trustees shall be elected by means of a secret mail ballot conducted among all Regular Members in good standing and by a plurality vote of those responding. The Ballot shall be mailed to the address recorded in the Local Union office as the last known address of the member.
No person shall be eligible for nomination as an Officer, member of the Executive Board or Trustee who has not been a member in continuous good standing for at least two (2) years immediately preceding the nominations and has during all of that time paid the full dues required for Regular Members of the Local Union on a timely basis. No person shall be eligible for nomination as Chapter Chair, Steward, or any other office in this Local Union who has not been a member in continuous good standing for at least six (6) months immediately preceding the nominations and has during all of that time paid the full dues required for Regular Members of the Local Union on a timely basis. The International President may waive this provision in his/her discretion based on good cause shown. Any such waiver shall be uniformly and equitably applied. No member convicted of a felony as defined in Section 504 of the Landrum-Griffin Act within the last thirteen years shall be eligible to hold office in this Local Union.
Retired Members, Associate Members, or any member paying less than the full dues required for Regular Members of the Local Union shall not be eligible for nomination as an Officer, member of the Executive Board, Trustee, Chapter Chair, Steward or any other office in the Local Union.
The General Election for all members of the Executive Board and Trustees shall take place every three (3) years at the time designated by the Executive Board.
The General Election shall be conducted as follows:
A. Election Committee
An Election Committee of three (3) members shall be recommended by the President and approved by the Executive Board. The duties of the Election Committee shall be to:
1. Conduct the affairs of the election in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution and applicable law;
2. Establish safeguards to insure a fair and democratic election;
3. Validate the eligibility of candidates for office;
4. Act as initial judge in all matters arising from the election procedures, including post-election protests;
5. Approve the form of the ballots (All ballots shall reflect slates of candidates, if such exist.);
6. Tabulate and certify the results of the election.
No member of the Election Committee may be a candidate for office, or a member of the Executive Board. Members not satisfied with a ruling of the Election Committee may petition the Local Union President within fifteen (15) days after the action thereon, to review the action of the Election Committee, pursuant to provisions of the Constitution and Bylaws.
Nominations for office shall take place at such time as are designated by the Executive Board in the appropriate election year. The election notice and timeline for nomination shall be widely published to the membership.
The Election Committee shall prepare an official nominating petition for use in each general election. Such petition shall include the signature of the Nominee, and all signatures shall be both printed and signed.
A member cannot be nominated for more than one position at a time.
The official nominating petition(s) shall be signed by at least fifty (50) Regular Members in good standing for all at-large positions: President, Secretary-Treasurer, Recording Secretary, Board Members, and Trustees.
C. Procedures for Voting
Voting shall be by mail. Ballots, together with a return envelope, shall be mailed to the membership by the Secretary-Treasurer. The ballot package shall be a double envelope, with signature required to insure fairness and secrecy. Ballots shall be retained in a safe place in accordance with applicable laws. Write-in candidates, absentee ballots and proxy voting shall not be permitted for any purpose, including any election for an Officer, member of the Executive Board, Trustee, Chapter Chair, Steward, or any other office in this Local Union.
D. Declaration of Election
The candidate receiving a plurality of the votes cast for that office shall be declared elected. If only one candidate is nominated for a given office, that candidate shall be declared elected without further procedures.
For Executive Board Member seats, no more than one (1) member from any one Employer shall serve as an Executive Board Member at the same time. This limitation shall be increased from one (1) to two (2) members for any Employer with more than 700 members.
For Trustee seats, no more than one (1) member from any one Employer shall serve as Trustee at the same time.
E. Fair Election Safeguards
Adequate safeguards to insure a fair election shall be provided, including the right of any candidate to have an observer at the counting of ballots.
The Local Union shall refrain from discriminating in favor or against any candidate. The union will comply with all reasonable requests of any candidate to distribute campaign literature by mail, at the candidate’s expense. All clerical work for this request shall be done by the Union and no home addresses or telephone numbers will be released to any candidate for office.
Article 8: VACANCIES
An office shall be declared vacant when the officer terminates employment in the jurisdiction of this Local or without excuse fails to attend three consecutive regularly scheduled meetings of the governing body or bodies to which he or she was elected. Vacancies for this or any other reason may be filled by appointment of the President, subject to approval of the Executive Board, to cover the remainder of the term of office, until the next general elections.
Article 9: DELEGATES TO THE SEIU INTERNATIONAL CONVENTION
All the Officers and Executive Board Members of the Local Union elected in conformity with all applicable statutes shall by virtue of such election be considered to be eligible delegates to any International, intermediate body or conference convention which may take place during their term of office. Trustees shall also be eligible. If, at the time of the receipt of the convention call, it shall appear that such number of elected officers is less than the number of delegates which the Local Union will be entitled to at an International, intermediate body or conference convention, then arrangements may be made for nomination and secret ballot election, if required, of an additional number of eligible members as convention delegates. Nominees for such position, if unopposed, shall be deemed elected without necessity for further procedures.
If the total number of elected officers is greater than the number which the Local Union is permitted to send to the convention(s), then the officers shall attend as delegates in the following order: 1. President; 2. Secretary-Treasurer; 3. Recording Secretary; 4. Executive Board members; 5. Trustees. Executive Board members shall attend as delegates in descending order based on the number of votes each received in the last election and any remaining delegate positions shall be filled by the Trustees in descending order based on the number of votes each received in the last election. However, if the elected members of the Executive Board and/or Trustees run unopposed, they shall be listed in accordance with length of membership in the Local Union. The Executive Board of the Local Union shall determine the number of delegates and alternates which shall represent it at the convention.
Article 10: CHAPTERS
The Local shall be subdivided into Chapters. A Chapter shall consist of the members within a recognized or certified bargaining unit. Chapters within the same Employer have the option to merge into a single Chapter to increase strength. Chapters may adopt their own operating rules, which are governed by this Constitution and Bylaws and by the SEIU Constitution and Bylaws.
To be a Chapter in good standing, a Chapter must elect, for terms to last no longer than three years, a Chapter chair, stewards, and bargaining team members. It must hold regular membership meetings at times which do not conflict with the Local Union’s Executive Board meetings or union-wide conventions. In order to be in good standing with the Local Union, a Chapter must be in compliance with its own internal operating procedures, insofar as they do not conflict with these Local Union Bylaws.
Each Chapter shall keep a record of the business of the Chapter and shall send to the Local Union office a copy of the minutes of each Chapter meeting, and notice of any change in Chapter leadership.
The role of each Chapter includes:
1. Representing members at beginning steps of the grievance procedure;
2. Building strength through organizing the members in their workplaces;
3. Encouraging member involvement and leadership in contract enforcement, bargaining campaigns, organizing and in political action;
4. Ratifying contracts;
5. Partnering with the Local to provide a solid communications link between the Chapters and the Local;
6. Electing a Chair to serve as the principal point of contact with the Local.
7. Leadership development, with support from the Local;
8. Holding Chapter membership meetings at least twice per year.
Article 11: STEWARDS
Stewards are the worksite leaders of the Local Union. A strong, democratic and effective Local Union is built on a solid foundation of stewards at each worksite. The responsibilities and the roles of a steward are defined by this Constitution and Local Union policies and procedures.
The diversity and complexity of the Local Union allows only for a general description of the steward’s roles and responsibilities in this Constitution. The Executive Board shall set policies as necessary on all matters relating to stewards except the basic policy shall be that stewards shall be chosen by members within a specifically defined unit within the worksite. In general, the policy of the union shall be one steward per 20 members or major fraction thereof, one steward per shift, and one steward per job category.
Should a steward for any reason whatsoever cease to be a steward, the position shall be declared vacant and the Chapter shall arrange for the election of a new steward. Such new stewards shall assume their responsibilities immediately upon their election.
A steward election may be called to recall a steward by submitting a petition to the President signed by 60% of members in a worksite or specifically defined unit.
Stewards shall be re-elected by a majority of their worksite or Chapter every three (3) years.
The Steward has no greater rights than any of the Regular Members of his/her unit. The responsibilities of stewardship, however, do outweigh those of ordinary membership. Stewards should take the initiative in pursuing training and education opportunities as offered by the Local Union in order to fulfill their responsibilities.
The role of each Steward includes:
1. In the absence of the members, the Steward represents his/her unit in all meetings of the union;
2. Subject to these bylaws and the operating rules of the Chapter, the first line of contact with management is the Steward;
3. All matters of importance to any member of his/her unit become matters of importance to the Steward;
4. The health, vitality and enthusiasm of his/her unit are the responsibility of the Steward;
5. Stewardship requires complete subordination of all interests to those interests that represent the highest good to the members of his/her unit.
Article 12: MEETINGS
Union-Wide Convention/General Membership Meeting
A Union-Wide Convention, also known as a General Membership Meeting, of all the Chapters of the Local Union together at the same time shall take place at least once every other year at such time and place as the Executive Board may designate. The membership shall be notified of such meeting time and place at least fifteen days prior to such meeting. The Regular Order of Business at this meeting shall be set by the President, in accordance with these bylaws.
The purpose of this Convention is:
1. To discuss and ratify major programs and plans of the Local Union;
2. For leadership development;
3. To connect Chapter leaders to the whole Union.
Although this Convention is open to all members in good standing, delegates from each Chapter are expected to attend to represent their Chapter. Delegates must be Regular Members in good standing. Every Chapter may nominate two delegates to attend: larger Chapters get an additional delegate for each 1-100 members after the initial 100 members (e.g. Chapters up to 100 members get two delegates; 101-200 members get three delegates; 201-300 members get four delegates, etc.). Delegates shall cast votes for their Chapter in any required roll call vote.
A quorum for this Convention shall be fifty Regular Members in good standing. In the event there is no quorum, the regular business for that meeting shall be conducted by the Executive Board and their actions shall represent the official policies and directives of the Local Union. Such action shall be submitted to the functioning Chapters, through the delegates, in written form within such time as specified by the Executive Board.
Special Membership Meetings
The Executive Board is authorized to call a special General Membership meeting at any time that it deems it necessary with at least five days advance written notice and with the purpose, time and date noted.
Member Request for a Membership Meeting
Whenever ten percent of the Regular Membership in good standing request a General Membership meeting, in writing, the President of the Local shall call a membership meeting within thirty days after receipt of such a request. The membership must be notified in writing at least five days prior to the meeting of the time, date, place and purpose of the meeting.
Special Executive Board Meetings
The President shall be able to call Special Executive Board meetings without prior written notice in such cases where s/he deems the time factor is of urgency and the issue demands immediate attention, or when s/he feels a strategic position of this Local Union would be lost by hesitation. S/he shall make a reasonable effort to contact all Executive Board members. Minutes shall be presented for review at the following regular Executive Board meeting.
The President may appoint a Sergeant-at-Arms to maintain order.
Votes at Meetings
There shall be no proxy votes at any meeting. All votes shall be cast in person.
A general membership meeting of each Chapter of the Local Union shall take place at least two times per year, or more frequently as prescribed by the Chapter’s operating rules, with sufficient advance notice to the members of the date, time and location of such meeting. The regular order of business for Chapter membership meetings shall be as prescribed in the Chapter’s operating rules.
Article 13: STRIKES
Where applicable, this Local Union shall not strike without previous notification to the International President, or, where prior notice is not practicable, without notification as soon as possible after commencement of the strike, in which notice this Local Union has stated that it has complied with all applicable notice requirements. If this Local Union fails to give such notice, the International President may withhold sanction for the strike called by the Local Union or affiliated body.
Article 14: REVENUE
The revenue of the Local Union shall be derived from dues, initiation fees, agency shop fees, service fees and other special assessments as might be determined in accordance with applicable law.
All dues and initiation fees shall be established in accordance with applicable law.
No dues increase shall be effective unless it was approved by a secret ballot vote of the regular membership. The Local Union may establish different categories of members and rates for persons in different categories.
Dues of members and agency fees of non-members are due and payable on or before the last day of the current month, and all other financial obligations to this Local Union must likewise be paid on or before the last day of the month in which they fall due. Any member failing to pay membership dues at such time shall not be considered in good standing; provided, however the failure of the Employer to transmit to the Local Union dues checked off by the Employer under the terms of a collective bargaining Agreement entered into with this Local Union shall not be considered a delay or a default in payment on the part of the member.
Any member on an unpaid leave of absence, to continue being a member in good standing, shall continue to meet their dues payment obligation.
This Local Union shall pay per capita tax to the International Union for any person from whom the Local Union received revenue, whether called dues or otherwise. This Local Union shall likewise pay any other obligations due to the International Union and it shall have no right to pay any bills before it pays its full obligations to the International Union each month.
There shall be a Committee established within the first twelve months after the adoption of this Constitution and Bylaws whose charge shall be a review of the current dues structure of the union, of the total revenue received, and of the resources available for union priorities; and to therefore establish a consistent dues structure across the Local Union. This Committee shall recommend to the Executive Board this dues structure that is fair and equitable to members and provides adequate resources to the Local Union. If approved by the Executive Board, these recommendations shall be voted upon by the membership. Once a new dues structure is approved by the membership, this Committee shall be disbanded.
All records of this Local Union pertaining to income, disbursements and financial transactions of any kind whatsoever must be kept for a period of at least six (6) years or longer if required by applicable law.
Neither this Local Union nor any sub-division thereof, nor members or groups of members, including councils, conferences, leagues, clubs or any association composed of members of this Local Union, or subdivision thereof shall in any manner, directly or indirectly, use, exploit or trade upon the name of the International Union, or affiliated body, or this Local Union, or any similar name or designation, nor in the name of this Local Union, levy or collect any taxes, dues or other moneys, nor in the name of the International Union, or affiliated body nor in the name of this Local Union, conduct any affair or any other activity, for the purpose of raising funds, including programs or soliciting advertising in any publication, either directly or indirectly, without first written permission from the Local Union President or from the International President of the International Union.
All of the aforesaid matters covered by this Article, including without limitation, funds, solicitations, gifts and donations, collected in the name of the union, shall at all times be the subject to audit by the union, and all books, records, and documents pertaining to matters covered by this section shall be available for inspection, copying and audit by the union.
The Secretary-Treasurer is authorized to negotiate affiliation agreements that provide the ability of the Chapter to phase in Local 888′s dues structure.
Article 15: MEMBERS’ INTERESTS
No member of this Local Union shall injure the interests of another member by undermining such member in connection with wages or financial status or by any other act, direct or indirect, that would wrongfully jeopardize a member’s office or standing.
Article 16: TRIALS AND APPEALS
PREAMBLE. In order to ensure members’ protection from the filing of frivolous charges, the following procedures shall apply:
Section 1. Whenever charges are proffered against any member or officer of this Local Union, the charges shall be filed in writing in duplicate with the Local Union Secretary-Treasurer. The charging party should specify what he/she believes constitutes a basis for the charges and the specific subsection(s) of the Constitution the charging party believes has been violated. The Secretary-Treasurer shall serve a copy of the charges on the accused either personally or by registered or certified mail directly to the last known address of the accused at least ten (10) days before hearing on the charges. If the charges are not specific, the trial body may dismiss the charges either before or at the hearing, but the charging party shall have the right to re-file more detailed charges which comply with this Section. No charges may be filed more than six months after the charging party learned, or could have reasonably learned, of the act or acts which are the bases of the charges.
Section 2. A sub-group of the Executive Board shall be the trial body, except that where the member charged or proffering such charges is a member of such sub-group, the Executive Board shall appoint a neutral Executive Board member as a substitute. If there are not enough neutral members of such Board to conduct a fair hearing, the Executive Board shall appoint three neutral members of the Local to act as the trial body.
Section 3. Charges and the basis for charges shall be governed by the provisions of the Constitution and Bylaws of the Union. The trial body, after requisite due process has been afforded, may impose such penalty as it deems appropriate and as the case requires.
Section 4. The decision of the trial body shall be deemed final unless the individual or individuals against whom said decisions shall have been rendered files with the Local Union Secretary-Treasurer a written request to appeal the decision of the trial body to the Executive Board of the Local Union within fifteen (15) days.
Anyone appealing a decision of the trial body shall be permitted to present his or her case to the Executive Board.
Section 5. In the event disciplinary action is taken against the accused, appeals may be taken in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution and Bylaws of the Union.
Section 6. The decision of the Executive Board shall be deemed final unless the individual or individuals against whom said decision have been rendered files with the Local Union Secretary-Treasurer as well as with the International Secretary-Treasurer a written request to appeal the decision of the Executive Board to the International Union within fifteen (15) days.
Section 7. Subject to the provisions of applicable statutes, every member or officer of this Local Union against whom charges have been proffered and disciplinary action taken agree, as a condition of membership or affiliation and the continuation of membership or affiliation, to exhaust all remedies provided for in the Constitution and Bylaws of the International Union and in this Constitution, and further agrees not to file or prosecute any action in any court, tribunal, or other agency until those remedies have been exhausted.
Section 8. The SEIU Member Bill of Rights and Responsibilities in the union, set forth in the International Constitution, shall be enforced exclusively through the procedures provided in this Article and any decision rendered pursuant to the procedures provided for herein, including any appeals, shall be final and binding on all parties and not subject to judicial review.
Article 17: AMENDMENTS
Amendments to this Constitution and Bylaws may be initiated by:
1. A two-thirds vote of a union-wide Convention/General Membership meeting;
2. A two-thirds vote of the Executive Board, or;
3. A petition signed by ten percent of the Regular Members of the Local Union who are in good standing.
The Executive Board shall submit the proposed amendment(s) to a mail ballot vote of the Regular Membership in good standing within sixty days from the date of initiation of the amendment(s) or receipt of a valid petition.
Amendments will be officially adopted once approved by a majority of those members voting by mail ballot.
Article 18: DISSOLUTION
Section 1 – No Chapter of this Local Union shall dissolve, secede, or disaffiliate while there are seven (7) dissenting members and in accordance with the procedures contained in Article XXV of the International Constitution and Bylaws. In the event of secession, dissolution or disaffiliation, all properties, funds and assets, both real and personal, of this Chapter shall become the property of the Local Union. Under no circumstances shall this Chapter distribute its funds, assets, or properties individually among its members.
Section 2 - Union Property
All elected representatives, at the expiration of their term of office or when removed from office or when their office is declared vacant, shall deliver to their successors all books, papers, money or any other property in their possession, and they shall not be relieved from their obligations until they have complied with this requirement.
The funds or property of this Local Union shall be used only for such purposes as are specified in this Constitution and as may be required to transact and properly conduct Local Union business.
Membership in this organization shall not vest any member with any right, title or interest in or to the funds of this Local Union. The title to all property, funds and other assets of this Local Union shall at all times be vested solely in the Executive Board of this Local Union for the joint use of the membership of this Local Union, but no member shall have severable proprietary rights, title or interest therein.
Article 19: SAVINGS PROVISION
If any provision of this Constitution shall be modified or declared invalid or inoperative by any competent authority of the executive, judicial or administrative branch of a state, provincial or federal government, including, but not limited to, any provision concerning dues or per capita tax, the Executive Board shall have the authority to suspend the operation of such provision during the period of its invalidity or modification and to substitute in its place and stead a provision which will meet the objections to its validity and which will be in accord with the intent and purposes of the invalid or modified provision. In the case of a challenge to a dues or per capita tax provision, this authority shall also apply in the event the Executive Board determines that such actions are necessary at an earlier stage of judicial or administrative proceedings in order to ensure the effective implementation of the intent of the Constitution provision at issue. If any Article or Section of this Constitution should be modified or held invalid by operation of law or by any tribunal of competent jurisdiction, the remainder of this Constitution or the application of such Article or Section to person or circumstances, other than those as to which it has been held invalid or modified, shall not be affected thereby.