The Auraria Higher Education Center, the group overseeing the universities housed on Denver’s Auraria Campus, discriminated against Latino janitors based on their national origin, according to a decision from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
[…] In total, 12 employees wrote letters to the EEOC alleging the workplace had English-only policies, a violation of federal equal opportunity law, among other charges. (more…)
A controversial overhaul of procedures used to hire and fire state employees in Wisconsin is set to take place this July.
The changes will go into effect under Wisconsin’s Act 150, which Republican Gov. Scott Walker signed in February. Among other policy modifications, the law will shift hiring away from civil service exams, toward a system based on applicants’ resumes, and will base layoffs primarily on performance, lessening the influence of seniority over whether a person keeps their job.
Proponents say the changes will speed up hiring and make it easier for agencies to cull poor performers and bad apples from their ranks. Critics argue the new law opens the door for political patronage and other forms of favoritism to sway who gets state jobs. And some say it makes it easier for supervisors in Wisconsin agencies to arbitrarily punish employees. (more…)
DENVER – University of Colorado service and student workers rallied at the Tivoli Center on the Auraria Campus Tuesday, asking the school to raise base pay to $15 per hour.
The rally took place during a CU Board of Regents meeting. Protesters delivered a petition with hundreds of signatures to the regents asking for a living wage of $15 dollars per hour for all all workers on all four CU campuses. CU Boulder raised wages earlier this year for some employees.
“It is time for us to lead the way in a $15 wage. The fact is we need to be that moral example. Because if you work in Denver, you should be able to afford to live in Denver. Same for Boulder, same for Aurora, same for Colorado Springs,” CU Board of Regents member Michael Carrigan said.
CU student workers and service workers say they hope the CU Regents will take tangible steps to address the pay of all campus workers.
Re: “Colorado has reduced its prison population, but at what cost to public safety?,” March 20 news story; and “Prisoner reform shouldn’t take precedence over public safety,” March 22 editorial.
As the union that represents Colorado’s parole officers, we were alarmed and concerned with The Post’s news article and editorial about the unintended consequences of reforms at the Department of Corrections. The governor’s call for a review of parole policies is a welcome sign.
A partnership between management and parole officers will be critical to the success of this review. Our parole officers have a common interest with the Department of Corrections management: public safety. The insight and experience of frontline parole officers, who work with and monitor offenders on a daily basis, must be taken into account when making policy decisions that affect not only their jobs but also our community as a whole (more…)
March is Women’s History Month. It’s also the month on which falls Lobby Day for Colorado WINS, the union representing Colorado’s 30,000 state employees.
As president of Colorado WINS, I’m proud to represent the state’s hardworking public servants, and I’m proud to be a union woman and a leader in a movement that fights for better pay and working conditions for all of our public employees. In unity there is strength.
Colorado’s public servants are truly a cross-section of our state. Colorado WINS represents workers from all parts of Colorado helping all kinds of Coloradans get ahead. We are corrections officers, child support enforcement workers, juvenile justice counselors, caregivers for our veterans and the developmentally disabled and protectors of Colorado’s natural resources.
And we never close — many of our employees work holidays and overnights to protect public safety and public infrastructure. (more…)
You may have seen the Department of Corrections pop up in the news these past few days, we certainly did. The Denver Post has published two stories detailing some questionable practices by the department.
The first story concerned a $280,000 settlement with a whistle-blower at DOC headquarters. These payouts can be disheartening to officers as they see money going out that could have been spent on making facilities safer. Even more concerning are the allegations against DOC. The former director of DOC’s Office of Planning and Analysis alleged the department was falsifying figures about the number of mentally ill people in solitary confinement and the number of inmates released from solitary directly back into their communities. She also alleged that DOC simply renamed programs they are trying to phase out in order for their numbers to match their reports.
On Thursday, the Denver Post editorial board published a brief but disingenuous editorial that can only fairly be described as a declaration of war against Colorado’s middle class vis-à-vis Colorado’s state employees.
At issue, ostensibly, is the 3% pay raise that state employees have been advocating for since last fall and which was given temporary approval by the legislature’s Joint Budget Committee on Monday.
But really the issue goes well beyond state employees – this is an issue of whether Colorado is going to have an economy that works for the middle-class. This is about whether or not Colorado policymakers are going to lead on the issue of income inequality or whether they’re going to perpetuate economic stagnation for Colorado’s middle-class. The Post has clearly chosen the side of economic stagnation for the majority of Coloradans and now the question is which side are our elected leaders on?
The Post blithely states that the 3% raise plus average merit pay comes with an $88 million price tag. That number is presented without any citation or context in a deliberate attempt to stoke maximal outrage. The Post neglects to mention that the governor’s budget request is for $58.5 million in salary and merit pay funds, a request they seem to endorse when stating, “It’s not a question of whether state workers deserve a pay hike.”
So fully 2/3rds of what the Post insinuates is an extreme and untenable financial outlay had already been requested by the governor and is endorsed by the Post. Let us assume, arguendo, that the Post’s completely uncited $88 million figure is correct. The governor’s total budget request for 2014/15 is $21.9 billion dollars – $88 million dollars is just 0.4% of that total budget. If 30,000 middle-class workers aren’t worth 0.4% of our budget then what are they worth? (more…)
Colorado WINS member & CDPHE employee Andres Guerrero was featured in tonight’s 9News/KUSA reporter Brandon Rittiman’s story on the wage campaign.
Colorado WINS member and CSU Pueblo employee Tamra Axworthy gave the following statement regarding the proposed layoffs at CSU-Pueblo:
“As a Colorado WINS member, I know how state employees contribute to the Southern Colorado economy. Across the board cuts hurt them, their families, and will have a ripple effect throughout Pueblo and Southern Colorado. I understand that my job could be at risk.
Before we apply such drastic measures, at such an impactful time of year, we should look at other options, many of which have already been identified. The University Budget Board has data and resources available to continue working towards that end. As employees, we are willing to listen and come together on a solution that doesn’t hurt families and our local economy.
As employees, we’re calling on our State Senator and State Representative to work with us and avoid these layoffs.”
Due to cuts, CSU-Pueblo has announced that it must cut $3.3 million from its budget, which could result in a loss of up to 50 positions. (more…)