Piece by piece, Kern County is trying to privatize public programs and services. It started with parks, which SEIU 521 members beat back through PERB.
This week, the library system was on the privatizing chopping block. The community vehemently shot that notion down and the board of supervisors has backed off for now. But on the same day, they voted to make privatizing services a county priority going forward.
Kern county workers need your help to send the board a message: “Just say ‘No’ to privatizing!”
Your voice matters – Sign the pledge if you haven’t.
Get a co-worker to sign it, too!
Theresa Becker talked about how hard it is to build a program without a board that puts our community first. “How can we reduce waste and be more efficient, with a high turnover rate because employees don’t have enough hours, are only making minimum wage, and have no benefits?”
Jasmin Labasso Spencer echoed a point that each of knows from our own departments, “Despite less money, the Library has maintained programs and services. Employees expertly use volunteers, Friends groups, and grants to fill the gaps. Every time an employee leaves the Library, other employees have taken the burden by taking on their duties.”
While we protect the library, we need to continue our work on the new contract, where the county has asked not only for more power to privatize everywhere, but also to reclassify hundreds of us from hourly to salaried in order to make us work longer and increase workloads while not paying overtime.
Come out next Tuesday, March 24 at 8 a.m. to the Board of Supervisors office (1115 Truxtun Ave., by the fountain) to tell the BOS to stand strong for quality public services!