Frequently Asked Questions
Many California Employees are asking questions about how to obtain better union represenatation. If you don’t find the answer to your question here, please use our Contact Page to let us know!
What is a Decertification Petition?
When a significant percentage (30%) of state employees represented by a union are dissatisfied by the union’s performance, or lack thereof, they can petition the Public Employee’s Relation’s Board (PERB) to hold an election to “Decertify” the current union and replace it with another union, or no union at all. If over 30% of the represented employees (members and non-members) submit Decertification petitions, then PERB will authorize, and conduct, an election to replace the existing union with another union, or no union, at all. At that time, the employees must cast their vote.
If you are dissatisfied with SEIU Local 1000’s performance download and submit the CPPEA Decertification Petition: DECERTIFICATION PETITION
Why Vote for CPPEA as our New Union?
CPPEA has been fighting for a better working environment for all state employees for over 8 years now, with no financial compensation, and all expenses being paid by the volunteer’s that made up CPPEA during that time. Eight years ago CPPEA organized a grass-roots movement to address many of the issues related to being represented by SEIU experienced by State employees, from reminding employees to file their annual Non-Germane Objector (NGO) forms during June, and to representing NGO Challenger’s in Arbitration, to filing law suits and going to court to fight against SEIU. Besides all that CPPEA has represented several employees in grievances previously dismissed, or otherwise not addressed by SEIU, and CPPEA has garnered favorable results for the employee(s) most of the time, a far better success rate than can be claimed by SEIU. Who else has stood up for you?
All this has been accomplished by CPPEA without any of the resources that SEIU has access to. Now CPPEA has legal representation in the United Law Center, a firm of more than 13 attorneys to handle some of the legal aspects of our repesentation. If CPPEA is willing to do all this and more with none of the resources available to SEIU, then don’t you think that that is a good indicator of what CPPEA can do for you as your “official” Exclusive Representative? Also, CPPEA is made up of State Employees, in other words, whatever actions we take effects us all; you, all other state employees and CPPEA too. Thats something that SEIU can’t say. When we state employees were taking pay cuts, SEIU raised our dues to 1.75%. CPPEA is a member-led State Employee Association, we know your problems, because they are our problems too. CPPEA will fight for our current and future pensions; CPPEA has job stewards ready to file grievances for you and if management decides not to cooperate with CPPEA job stewards, then the second visit to address that employee’s grievance will be conducted by CPPEA’s legal representative, a ULC attorney that will ensure that management is adhering to all State and Federal Labor laws, as well as contractual agreements, and to ensure management addresses your grievance.
Will I Lose my Pension, or Benefits if I leave SEIU?
State employees are being told:
“… if you leave SEIU, you will lose your Healthcare”
“… if you leave SEIU, you will lose your Pension”
We will lose nothing by leaving SEIU.
Per PERB – Gov Code 3.12.240 Modification of Representation Units:
A. General. Any classification moved from one representation unit to another shall continue to be covered by the terms and conditions of the Memorandum of Understanding of the former representation unit through its current expiration date.
In other words, during, and after, the decertification process, by law, the provisions of our current contract with the State including, but not limited to, retirement pension, healthcare, and employment will remain intact and nothing will change, until the next union (CPPEA) negotiates a new contract. Do not buy into ANYONE’s scare tactics and fear mongering; you will not lose anything by Decertifying SEIU, and we all have much to gain by replacing them with CPPEA.
What is a “Fair Share Fee Payer”?
Someone who has quit the Union no longer pays Union dues, but they do pay about 97.6% of their Union dues, as their “Fair Share Fee”. They are known as a “Fair Share Fee Payers”, or a NonMember. Fair Share fee payer pays 97.6% of union dues, which is 1.5% of that State Employee’s monthly gross salary.
Is a Fair Share Fee Payer part of SEIU?
A NonMember/Fair Share fee payer cannot run for a union position/office and cannot vote in union elections, but by law, they are supposed to be represented just the same as a Union member.
What are the rights of a Fair Share fee payer?
The union, SEIU Local 1000, has to represent and treat a NonMember/Fair Share fee payer and a member exactly the same. A NonMember/Fair Share fee payer and a member of the union are equally protected by the provisions and terms of the Contract, or Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). The main difference between a Union Member and a NonMember, is that Members get to vote on Union issues, and they have access to other Third-Party services, such as “Group Legal” or other services provided by the Union.
How can I stop SEIU from taking my money to spend in support of political causes?
A NonMember/Fair Share fee payer is eligible and entitled to apply for Non-Germane Objector (aka Hudson Objector) status, which is a way to document the employee’s objection to the Union’s Non-Germane expenditures and save a percentage of their union dues during the fiscal year. The Non-Germane objector application must be post marked after June 1st and no later than June 30th of each year, and must be filed annually.
What does “Non-Germane Objector” mean?
A Non-Germane objector is an employee who is not a member of the union, who does not want to be forced to subsidize the union’s political or ideological activities “not germane” to the collective-bargaining process. The Supreme Court has held that a NonMember/Fair Share fee payer is entitled to challenge the amount of Non-Germane expenditures.
“…Safeguards are necessary to prevent compulsory subsidization of ideological activity by non-union employees” [The U.S. Supreme Court Teachers v. Hudson (1986)]
How can I challenge the amount of money SEIU wants to take from my paycheck?
A NonMember/Fair Share fee payer who wishes to challenge the Non-Germane expenditure has to file a letter post marked no earlier than June 1st, and no later than June 30th of each year with the SEIU Local 1000 membership department. SEIU Local 1000 is obligated to schedule a hearing no later than August 31, of each year to respond to NGO Challengers. The hearing will take place before an impartial arbitrator from American Arbitration Association and SEIU Local 1000 will pay for it.
Do I have to appear in court for Arbitration if I challenge SEIU’s non-germane expenditures?
If you submit CPPEA’s NGO form, you assign CPPEA’s Ken Hamidi power of attorney rights to represent you in the NGO Challenge Arbitration process. The number of NGO Challengers has increased tremendously since CPPEA has facilitated challengers in the annual arbitration.
How much of my Union Dues can I save as an Non-Germane Objector (NGO)?
The Union is supposed to calculate their expenses that are not germane to the collective bargaining and representation process, and return that percentage to Fair Share Fee payers, but for the past several years neither the NGO Challengers, nor CPPEA have been able to get SEIU to open it’s books to allow an unbiased third party to audit their actual expenses to verify what percentage of Fair Share fee is actually Non-germane.
What is the NGO Challenge process?
The Non-Germane Challenge process is simply an Arbitration set in a courtroom where the NGO’s ask the Union to verify their calculations of expenses that are not germane to their representation. The Arbitrator is supposed to be selected by NGO’s and the Union, but for the past several years SEIU Local 1000 has selected the same Arbitrator. The Arbitratration is supposed to be held within two hours or so, drive time to NGO Challengers so that they can attend the arbitration, but for the past several years SEIU Local 1000 has only held the arbitration in Sacramento. The Union is supposed to open its books for auditing to ensure its NGO expenditures have been accurately reported to the NGO Challengers, but for the past several years, SEIU Local 1000 has not opened its books to allow auditing.