On September 11, eighty-eight call center workers represented by Local 18007 at Peoples Gas in Chicago, Illinois began enjoying the benefits of their first union contract. This followed their overwhelming 90% plus majority ratification vote for the contract in late August.
“I am extremely proud to bring back to Chicago UWUA jobs that belong here, and will remain here, in a union city,” said Rick Passarelli, Local 18007 business manager and National Executive Board member, in announcing the contract settlement. “I have had this on my radar for several years as a goal of the local and our National Union. I would like to thank my entire bargaining team for the tireless work put into these negotiations. Our new call center reps were part of the process from the start. They listened to the great benefits and protections of becoming union brothers and sisters, and never wavered from their vision to make it happen. They spoke with one resounding voice and are part of the UWUA family; we welcome them.”
The call center workers are now the Gas Workers Local 18007 C bargaining unit, and join their union brothers and sisters working for Peoples Gas. Their numbers are expected to grow to 200.
The two-year first contract includes, among other things, raises and seniority protections. It secures the right to bargain medical and retirement benefits, and it includes successor language, shift bids based on seniority, and an hourly pay premium for bi-lingual call takers.