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April 24, 2014

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Art

SF museum workers vote to strike

Workers with SEIU Local 1021 could be walking off the job soon at San Francisco's Legion of Honor and de Young museum. (Allie Caulfield/Flickr)
Workers with SEIU Local 1021 could be walking off the job soon at San Francisco's Legion of Honor and de Young museum. (Allie Caulfield/Flickr)
Source   NBC Bay Area

The usually demure union of museum workers created its own installation Monday at the Legion of Honor.

SEIU Local 1021 inflated a giant rat out in front and handed out flyers educating tourists and locals alike on the issues brewing inside the 21-inch thick walls.

Typically, the Legion of Honor and M.H. de Young Memorial Museum make headlines for their stunning permanent collections and intriguing temporary exhibits – not for labor disputes and strikes.

However, 90 percent of SEIU Local 1021 members voted last week to authorize a strike after nearly a year of intense labor negotiations.

Union leaders say the contract offered by the Corporation of Fine Arts Museums outlines far less pay for future hires and requires existing employees to pay more for their health insurance, even though the museums have seen a $19.6 million increase in assets over the past two years.

Cristal Java who is handling SEIU Local 1021’s negotiations, told NBC Bay Area:

“Museum workers, they typically don’t get in labor disputes. They like to have conversations, they’re artists.”

Art handlers, front desk staff and membership representatives are bound together in SEIU Local 1021’s stance against the museums. Union workers believe an agreement will be reached before a strike is required, though they are prepared to do so.

A strike date has not yet been set.

Source   NBC Bay Area
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