Local 619 City of Cerritos Employees

Tremendous outpouring of public support for Cerritos City Employees in seven-hour, marathon impasse hearing

In one of the most dramatic public meetings in the City of Cerritos in many years, hundreds of Local 619 members, Cerritos residents, union supporters, and dignitaries showed up on Thursday night to oppose City management’s imposition of a negotiations impasse on its employees.  Congresswoman Linda Sanchez and a representative from Assemblymember Tony Mendoza's office urged the City to reach an agreement and respect its employees’ right to bargain.

The public support was overwhelming for you, the City employees!
The meeting, which began at 7pm and lasted until nearly 2am on Friday, drew a standing room-only crowd in the packed Chamber. Nearly everyone who signed up to speak – roughly 33 speakers out of 35 by one count – spoke about the exceptional services that Local 619 members provide and expressed strong support for the rank-and-file Cerritos employees, not management, in the labor dispute. (Watch the entire archived hearing at www.cerritos.us.)

Despite this unprecedented and united support for Local 619 members, the Council voted to implement the impasse anyway, and impose its final contract offer. The last time the City imposed a contract was in 1982 – nearly three decades ago.

Council members Mark Pulido and Joseph Cho fiercely defended the employees from this “drastic step.” Pulido proposed that the City postpone the vote for 60 days, during which management and labor would return to the bargaining table and settle an agreement that everyone could live with. Cho supported this motion – but the other three Council members refused, voting instead to unilaterally impose implementation of the City's Last Best and Final offer despite overwhelming public support for the employees.

Many Local 619 Board members spoke about their pride in serving Cerritos, their dedication to the community, and in many cases, their personal roots here.

They urged management to consider the numerous concessions that the union has made over many months and even years, and talked about the lack of respect or appreciation that 619 members have felt from City leaders throughout the negotiations process.

Mayor Carol Chen, adding insult to injury, required everyone – including the state dignitaries who showed up to speak – to wait three hours until the agenda item was even addressed.

Sanchez, who strongly urged a collaborative, constructive labor-management resolution, scolded Chen for inappropriately requiring residents – many with children in tow “on a school night” – to wait so long for an opportunity to speak. Sanchez also offered to mediate and assist in bringing management and labor to an agreement in the next 60 days. Her offer was rejected by Mayor Chen and Council members Bruce Barrows and Jim Edwards, who voted instead for the impasse.

Several local media outlets were there to report the story, including Cerritos-Artesia Patch, Los Cerritos News, and the Chinese Daily News.

Please see some photos from the 4/28/11 impasse hearing posted on your website

We encourage all of you to become involved and share your thoughts with us as we move forward in the weeks and months ahead! These are crucial times, and we will keep you updated on the negotiations process.

In unity, we will prevail!

Click here to see the materials Local 619 distributed to the public at the impasse hearing.

This letter is just one of many expressions of support Local 619 has received from the community!

This draft resolution is another indication of the growing community support for us.


Additional Resources

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