Tulsa Mayor Kathy Taylor and representatives of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Local 1180 which represents the City’s Emergency 911 operators, have signed a contract giving the operators the 8 percent raise the union had sought.
Earlier this month the operators, which staff the telephones to take calls and relay information to fire, police and ambulance service dispatchers, voted unanimously to accept the City’s offer.
The offer included a 4 percent raise retroactive to July 1st, plus another 4 percent beginning Jan. 1, 2007. The E-911 operators group includes approximately 90 employees.
“These operators perform a vital role in protecting our citizens,” said Mayor Taylor. “They work in a stressful environment and are the first contact a citizen has with emergency services in most cases. Without them, the police and firefighters and medical responders couldn’t do their jobs as effectively.”
AFSCME spokesman Mark Stodghill said the signing is good news for the employees who just joined the labor union a few months ago.
“I am proud of this new EC unit of Local 1180,” said Local President Mark Stodghill. “They wanted a union. They stood together and joined in record numbers and then stood firm and smart and negotiated a very good first contract. The administration is to be commended for making a good-faith effort to settle an historic first contract with these employees that both sides can live with. This is an admirable start for a healthy collective bargaining relationship in the future.”
City budget officials estimate the E-911 wage increases will cost the City about $240,000 annually.