Contract included higher wages, meaningful collaboration with management, and precedent-setting LGBTQ inclusive benefits
Last Friday, healthcare workers at Mazzoni Center voted to ratify their first union contract. Workers had been negotiating with management since they first unionized two years ago, and succeeded in achieving their goals of higher wages, benefits, and meaningful collaboration with management.
Mazzoni Center workers initially organized during a tumultuous time for the organization, and throughout the bargaining process worked to ensure Philadelphia’s LGBTQ community has a stable, high-quality health center that is accountable to the community’s needs.
“We’ve been negotiating this contract for two years,” said Jay Alston, Technology and Data Coordinator. “We knew that to provide the care Philadelphia’s LGBTQ community deserves and maintain the community’s trust in Mazzoni Center, we needed to have a voice. Now that we’ve secured that voice in our contract, we’re looking forward to partnering with management to better provide the quality care our patients and clients deserve.”
Highlights of the contract settlement include:
- Wage increases that fix historic inequities, invest in the lowest-paid workers, and honor length of service;
- Union’s Training and Education Fund for tuition reimbursement and continuing education;
- Paid parental leave;
- Paid leave for gender-affirming surgeries; and
- Structures in place to give employees a voice in the agency and to hold management accountable.
“Employees of Mazzoni believe deeply in providing the best possible care for the communities we serve. In order to provide the care our patients deserve, it is critical to be able to hold management accountable and work together for change,” said Social Worker Anemone Schlotterbeck. “This contract is an important step in the right direction for Mazzoni Center.”
Throughout negotiations, Mazzoni Center workers had the support of the community and several elected officials, which inevitably helped lead to Friday’s settlement.
“I congratulate the workers at Mazzoni Center for the work they’ve done to serve Philadelphia’s LGBTQ community throughout these negotiations, and every day at the center,” said PA Rep. Brian Sims. “Many of the benefits in this contract – such as paid parental leave, paid leave for gender-affirming surgeries, and higher wages – should be a model for other employers throughout the Commonwealth.”