Presidio Trust Union Employees Deserve Fair Compensation & Fair Treatment

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Presidio Trust Union Employees Deserve Fair Compensation & Fair Treatment

This petition made change with 250 supporters!
Presidio Trust Union started this petition to CEO of the Presidio Trust Jean Fraser and

To the Board of Directors of the Presidio Trust:

Presidio Trust unionized employees need a new, fair contract!

The labor force and community members demand that the Board of Directors of the Presidio Trust take immediate action to honor the full extent of the 2020 contract (collective bargaining agreement, CBA) reached by union members and the Board! 

THE PRESIDIO'S EXECUTIVE LEADERSHIP IS UNDERCUTTING ITS LABOR FORCE

While the pandemic has raged, the Presidio's management team has systematically undercut its labor force—the gardeners, painters, plumbers, high voltage specialists, foresters, and so many more—who keep the Presidio running and beautiful.

In early 2020, union members and the Trust's board approved a new contract including protective language for workers about pay, benefits, advancement, and arbitration. 

That contract was never signed because the Trust's executive management, including current CEO Jean Fraser, began to walk back key elements, including guaranteed cost-of-living adjustments (COLAs), the retention of premium pay for employees working on Sundays, the right to appeal unjust termination, and more. 

In spring of 2021, the Trust's executive management unilaterally implemented an unfair compensation plan over union objections and stated that, after years of negotiations, they would no longer discuss pay and benefits as part of any contract.

Trust employees have gone without the protections of a contract since 2011 due to delay tactics of the Trust's executive management. 

WHO NEEDS YOUR SUPPORT? CARETAKERS OF THE PRESIDIO

Since the 1990s, workers have transformed the Presidio—San Francisco's urban national park—from dereliction to glory; today, the park is a beacon in the northwest corner of SF, a place to bask in nature interwoven through urban features, to learn reverently about cultural and natural history, to volunteer, to exercise, to make art, to gather with friends and family.

The Presidio has offered refuge during the pandemic, soothing minds and spirits and fostering resiliency, in spite of the plague of uncertainty we have all suffered. 

We play with our kids here, we live here, walk our dogs here, we watch birds here, we work here, we breathe here. 

The Presidio is, collectively, ours.

As federal government employees, we are unable to strike—but if we could, we would have long ago. 

HOW DID THE PRESIDIO GET HERE?

The Presidio has serious problems, including astronomically-expensive deferred maintenance costs for its military-era buildings, which are rife with asbestos, lead paint, rodent issues, and the need for retrofits and upgrades. We don’t deny that this is true. Some of the Trust’s solutions to this issue—requesting federal dollars and seeking other revenue streams beyond the historic precedents—are reasonable.

But the Trust has also couched blatantly anti-labor classism in the benign-sounding cover of “increasing efficiency.” After years of appearing to negotiate in good-faith with members of LiUNA Local 792, a chapter of the United Public Employees of California—with whom it organized meetings and voted on such items as a compensation plan—the Trust’s management have decided to gaslight the bargaining unit, asserting that the Trust is not required to negotiate with the Union at all.

The Trust has abandoned elements of a compensation plan that was negotiated, ratified, and approved by the Presidio Trust Board of Directors in January 2020. Specifically, they have abandoned the elements of the plan with vital benefits for workers, such as a commitment to cost of living adjustments—one of the very same issues that recently drove 1,400 Kellogg’s workers to step out on strike to protest the greed and inequity that plague corporate America 

Instead, the Trust selectively forged ahead with the elements of the plan with short-term financial benefits for the organization and which harm employees—benefit reductions such as reduced leave earnings for new employees, reduced health insurance contributions from the Trust for single employees, and a new dental plan with major increases in employee out-of-pocket costs.

These facets of the plan were accepted only on the condition that they were being exchanged for the benefits mentioned above. Meanwhile, management has reneged on the commitment to guaranteed cost of living adjustments beyond 2023, is proposing to do away with Sunday premium pay, and has walked away from the assessment process that allowed employees to be paid based on superior skills.  

At the Trust, most white-collar office employees (many working from home) report their time via the honor system. By contrast, blue-collar employees who keep the park running are deeply mistrusted by management. The executive team has instituted a system of tracking work that is so onerous and time-consuming, it epitomizes inefficiency and has devastated morale, making it ever-easier to legitimize the contracting of work that was once a source of pride for in-house Presidio employees. 

Although the Trust is a federal agency, its administrators are managing it like a private real estate company operating in their own best interests, as opposed to a public agency for the benefit of all. These administrators pick and choose when to adhere to federal standards for government workers—specifically, when it is cheap for the Trust to operate as other agencies do, and not otherwise. As a federal employer, the Trust should be upholding the highest standards of ethics in relation to their employees, not thieving the tactics of thuggish, heartless corporations.

Perhaps most nefariously of all, Management is planning to reinstate pre-pandemic pay rates for upper Management positions—a contemptuous slap in the face to the hard-working people who have dedicated their careers to building the Presidio Trust, and evidence that the verbal façade the Trust has been internally performing about equity is merely a means of protecting unfairly high wages for those in roles that already earn far more than the average within the organization. The CEO of the Presidio Trust, it’s worth noting, earns more than the President of the United States, and lives for free in one of the most lavish historic homes in the Presidio, as do other members of upper management. 

HOW CAN YOU HELP?

We, the undersigned, demand that the Board of Directors of the Presidio Trust take immediate action to honor the full extent of the 2020 contract (collective bargaining agreement, CBA) reached by union members and the Board! 

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