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Updated: Aug 17, 2023

After four days of casting ballots last week, thousands of MEF-AFSCME 101 members, along with members of Local 21, have voted by an overwhelming 99% to authorize a strike. The Vote results were as follows:

AMSP voted 96.59% Yes

CAMP voted 97.8% Yes

AEA voted 99% Yes

MEF-AFSCME voted 99.26% Yes

As a result, our bargaining committees have scheduled a three-day strike

On Monday morning, the Union made it clear to the City that the strike will begin on Tuesday, August 15th, at 06:00 AM, for an initial three-day period ending on Friday, August 18th at 5:59 AM. For shift workers, no one will leave work or report to work mid-shift (more details to come for people working swing and night shifts).

Everyone must plan to attend one of the daily picket locations each day. There are a few different options for each day. Day one is a longer day. The remaining two days will be shorter in length.

Lunch, snacks, water, coffee, etc., will be provided, so make sure you sign up through the link so we can have enough for each picket location!

In some exciting news, in just the last 24-hours, we are in the process of raising $200,000 in funds from Local 101 and other Unions for striking workers in the most need and who need assistance to make ends meet as a result of the Strike. Everyone, regardless of income level, should feel empowered to stand up for what's right. We are still working through the process, but more information will be available in the coming week and at the picket lines. The broader labor community is lining up beside us in solidarity as we take this effort on. We are also starting a GoFundMe page where we can accept smaller donations and we'll share that info soon so you can pass it on through your networks.

Picket lines will be fun, kid-friendly, and pet-friendly. Plan to wear your teal 'Staff Up San Jose' shirt or MEF – AFSCME Green (limited shirts available for distribution at the pickets). Bring noise makers if you have them.

Striking is a last resort. We expect City Council Members and Mayor Mahan to finally listen to us and address the understaffing crisis impacting libraries, the airport, affordable housing, emergency response times, and more. But if they don’t, we are ready to strike for our services.

This vote shows that thousands of San Jose city workers are united for a fair contract that guarantees competitive wages, eight weeks of family leave, restored retirement benefits, and much more. We are united for funding and staffing up our public services. We are united for our San Jose community.

We know our demands are fair, and the City can afford them. A recently published report by Working Partnerships USA shows that the City of San Jose has a long history of budget surpluses driven by general fund expenditure savings. Accurate accounting could create $13-$28 million in additional budget savings in the 2023-2024 adopted budget to be reinvested so that San Jose can recruit and retain committed staff. The money is there. It’s up to us to ensure the political will is there too.

Much more information will be released in the coming days, including more about Strike logistics and critical employee designations (the Union will officially notify those few dozen people responsible for life or death services to the public and our animals after a judge has made a determination). We’ll also release another FAQ and schedule as many information sessions as possible.

Visit our Strike Ready resource page to download resources, including the Strike FAQ:

We need everyone to keep up the momentum. Wear your teal coalition shirts or MEF – AFSCME Green tomorrow. If you can, please plan to attend the City Council meeting for an hour or so during public comment at 9:30 AM (Tuesday). They are discussing our contract, and it’s their last chance to do the right thing.

Stay tuned for more information about picket line locations and times.

Keep it up. We are going to win.


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