SEIU Local 73 Has Already Filed Strike Notice

CHICAGO (CBS) — The Chicago Park District announced Wednesday that has reached an agreement with all but one of the unions that represents its workers.

But the one remaining union represents almost two-thirds of the entire Park District workforce and has already delivered a strike notice.

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The Park District reached an agreement Wednesday with the Chicago Park District Coalition, a collective of 22 individual unions that represent the organization’s trades professionals, according to a news release. The five-year deal includes an annual wage increase, but also a rise in employee health care contributions.

Agreements were also recently reached with the International Union of Operating Engineers Local 399 and Teamsters Local 703, the release said.

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“We are pleased that we’ve reached agreements with 24 of our 25 unions,” Chicago Park District General Superintendent and Chief Executive Officer Michael Kelly said in a news release. “I would like to personally thank union leadership for their efforts to reach a resolution that is mutually favorable for its members, the District and city taxpayers.”

But negotiations continue with SEIU Local 73, which represents almost two-thirds of the Park District workforce – including program instructors, park attendants, park supervisors, and recreation leaders, the release said.

The most recent Park District proposal to the SEIU local would give its lowest-paid workers the highest wage increase in Park District history, the release said. The Park District has been negotiating with the SEIU Local 73 since January – and nearly all non-economic issues were resolved in 17 meetings since, the release said.

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But SEIU Local 73 has already served the Park District a notice to strike on or after Tuesday, Oct. 8.