California Federation of Interpreters

Membership Meeting will be held for all members in good standing of CFI Local 39000:

Saturday July 21st– 10am to 12noon

12215 N. Telegraph Road Suite 210
Santa Fe Springs, CA 90670

Voting on the contract will be by E-vote conducted by Ballotpoint Elections.  
Beginning the week of July 23rd.

 

KEY POINTS IN THE REGION ONE MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING NEGOTIATED BY CFI AND REGION 1 COURTS

 

ACHIEVED:

A 7.5% salary increase over the three-year term of the contract distributed in the following manner: a 2.75% base salary adjustment effective the first pay period after ratification; a base pay increase of 2.50% effective the first pay period 12 months after the first increase; 12 months following the second pay increase mentioned there will be a final base pay adjustment of 2.25%.

A one-time, non-base bonus payment of 2% to all regular status employees in paid status as of June 30, 2018 effective the first pay period after ratification; this payment will be prorated for part-time employees, and all intermittent part-time and as-needed interpreters will receive a one-time payment of $500.00.

Example Full-time employee annual salary $77,005.20 x 2%= 1,540.10 bonus

Twelve months after ratification, full-time interpreters in service as of July 15, 2019 will receive the following one-time, non-pensionable, non-base payment based on length of service: 1% for 5-9 years of continuous service; 2% for 10-14 years; 3% for 15 or more years of continuous service.

Example Annual salary $79,227.20 x 1%= $792.27;  2%= $1,584.54;  3% $2,376.82

Interpreter employees who are certified or registered to interpret in two or more language pairs will receive a 1% salary enhancement for all hours paid for each additional language pair.

The Court will make reasonable efforts to make up to 15 hours of CIMCE-qualifying continuing education and training available to each regular status bargaining unit employee at no cost to the employee; this is an increase from 6 hours offered in the previous MOU.

The Court has agreed to reimburse all full-time and regular status part-time interpreters the cost of their annual certification/registration fees required by the Judicial Council of CA for each language pair in which the employee is certified or registered.

A side letter regarding a reopener on Article 18 (Interpreter Assignments) is included in the MOU which states that the Court will notify CFI prior to making any changes to the interpreter assignment process and will make Court representatives available to meet and confer regarding said changes.  Until the parties exhaust the meet and confer process, the Court will continue to abide by the provisions of Article 18, which respects interpreter seniority. 

NOT ACHIEVED:

Other than the one-time, non-pensionable, non-base payment mentioned in the third paragraph above, the Court was unwilling to offer any other kind of salary increase based on length of service (steps) and to negotiate any further on their offer.

We were unable to get binding arbitration language included in Article 9 (Grievance Procedure) or Article 11 (Expedited Arbitration).

The Region rejected CFI’s proposed changes to Sections 37.2 and 37.3 of Article 37 (Stewards) and proposed the status quo; their proposal was incorporated herein by reference in their final Comprehensive Package Proposal. They were unwilling to pay for caucus time for the bargaining team in preparation for negotiations (which has been the past practice), and they did not grant travel time for any bargaining member traveling from the Central Coast.

We were unable to get the creation of a new classification status for retired court interpreters allowing them to be rehired under California Government Code Section 7522.56.  This would have been included in Article 16 (Employment Status).

We were unable to get into the contract language which addresses the issue of the docking of “F” status interpreters if they arrive late to an assignment given to them on the same day.  Said language was hoped to be included in Article 18 (Interpreter Assignments).

The bargaining team feels that there are some important issues that need to be resolved, most significantly recognition of our years of service to the Courts by means of “steps” or a “longevity increase”.  We do not feel that a one-time non-pensionable, non-base payment as mentioned in the third paragraph of this letter reflects true appreciation of our services by the Court, besides which it does not help those interpreters who are near retirement in terms of their pension pay-out.  As a matter of fact, as our attorney Caren Sencer pointed out to the Region, it holds those employees hostage for a year if they want to take advantage of that one-time bonus. As a result, we are not recommending ratification of this contract. However, because the Region made it clear that their offer would expire that same day, June 27, 2018 at 4:30 p.m., the team felt that that the members deserved the opportunity to let their voices be heard.  We believe we have done as much as we can at the bargaining table.  In order to achieve more, the members have to be willing to mobilize and carry out concerted work actions. Before casting your vote, please carefully read the proposed contract and consider what you are willing to do to improve it.

If the members vote to reject the proposed contract, the Committee will notify the court and we will go back to the bargaining table in an effort to improve the offer. We are not at an impasse and we were not told this was the “last, best and final offer”.

Signed:

Michael Ferreira
Robert Guerrero
Dan Kaufman
Pedro Ramírez-Navas
Kathleen Sinclair
Doris Vick
Caren Sencer, Attorney, spokesperson
 

Members of the Region 1 CFI Bargaining Committee

Region 1 MOU Draft Document

 

 

Region 1 Bargaining Update

June 26 & 27, 2018 Stanley Mosk Courthouse

Your Bargaining Committee met with Region 1 on Tuesday and Wednesday at the Stanley Mosk Courthouse in the hopes of finalizing a contract after nearly a year of bargaining.  Our contract expired on June 30, 2017.  At the last session in May we were told that the next available date was not until August 2nd but after vigorous protest from our counsel, we were granted earlier dates.  Court Counsel, Ivette Peña, acted as Region 1 spokesperson, as the usual spokesman, Joe Wiley, was not available either day.

The key issues that were still in dispute surrounded wages and assignments.  As you know, the committee was focused on a wage proposal that additionally included longevity pay (step system).  To that end, until the union's most recent proposal, each proposal made by the bargaining committee included a monetary increase in our salary based on service years.  As a counter, the Court proposed a 2.75% base salary increase upon ratification; a one-time 2% signing bonus for A and C status employees, and $500.00 for F status. Then in the second year of the contract, a 2.5% base salary increase, and 2.25% base salary increase in the third year. The Court’s final wage proposal also included a one-time, non-pensionable, non-base payment on July 15th, 2019. The breakdown is: 1% for employees with 5 to 9 years of continuous service; 2% for those with 10 to 14 years of continuous service; and 3% to those employees with 15, or more years of continuous service.

Concerning Article 18, Assignments, the Court accepted the Union’s proposal which requires a meet and confer between Management and the Union prior to the implementation of the new assignment scheduling system and would incorporate any agreed upon changes into the MOU.  Over the course of two days of negotiations, the committee was able to formally Tentatively Agree to provisions in the MOU regarding Leaves of Absence, New Employees, and technical updates to the grievance procedure. 

The complete contract will now be sent to TNG for review and approval to present to the Region 1 bargaining unit members for a vote.  This document represents many months of hard work; however, it is not fully endorsed by this bargaining team with regards to Articles 21 (Salary) and 37 (Stewards). Specifically, the team is not satisfied with the singular one-time longevity bonus proposed by the Court; it does not add anything to the base salary (something that has be neglected by the Court for way too long) and does not truly reflect the value of long-time commitment by the interpreters to the Courts. In Article 37 the issue in contention is the LASC’s failure to follow past practice of paying for caucus time to prepare for contract negotiations … something that has been the precedent over the last 15 years.

Thank you Branda Rosas-Almada, Miguel Acevedo, Hernán Vargas, Diana Díaz, Sonia Peralta, James Varese, Marco Larriva, Ismael Carrillo, Chi Choi, Sandra Rodríguez, Ana Placencia, Karmele Landaribar, and Irene Luévano for showing your support by attending the session(s)!  The presence of so many members visibly impressed temporary spokesperson, Ivette Peña.

Be attentive for updates regarding the TNG approval process and bargaining unit contract ratification vote.

Yours in solidarity,

Caren Sencer
Pedro Ramírez-Navas
Robert Guerrero
Dan Kaufman
Michael Ferreira
Doris Vick
Kathleen Sinclair

 

 
 

Region 1 Bargaining Update

May 21 and May 22, 2018, Santa Fe Springs 

The Bargaining Committee met with Court Administration in Santa Fe Springs for a two-day marathon session.  Today's session was marked by discord as we continue to get stonewalled as our reasonable requests continue to be dismissed with very little engagement on their part.  
 
The following is a synopsis of the latest developments in our contract negotiations: 
 
Tentative Agreements
Court Administration and your Bargaining Team reached the following tentative agreements:
  • SLO  Side Letter relating to benefits
  • Article 19.3 side letter relating to cross assignments
  • Article 8 - Discipline and Discharge
  • Article 22 - Professional Conduct, Standards and Conditions 
 
Article 21 - Salary 
The wage proposal has not yet been resolved.  We continue to vigorously pursue longevity increases (steps).  On Monday Region 1 proposed an additional .75% over three years (an additional .25% each year) contingent upon our abandoning steps.  Previously  we proposed a 2% adjustment for those certified/registered in more than one language.   We then countered with 1% for each additional language pair for all hours paid and Region 1 accepted.  
 
Article 23 - Education and Training Opportunities
There was some movement on the payment of annual renewal fees and we continue to push for a more inclusive offer.  In addition, Region 1 offered increased in-house CIMCE credits up to 15 hours over two calendar years.
 
Article 18  - Interpreter Assignments
Several times we have attempted to address the docking  of pay for employees who receive same-day assignments and our efforts were rejected.   
  
Upcoming Bargaining dates
The Court has decided that other open contract negotiations are more important than meeting with us.  As a result, the earliest date we could agree to is August 2nd at an as-yet undetermined location at 10 am.  They refused to commit to more that one day.   “A” and “C” status interpreters should send in their RTOs  to observe the negotiations first-hand. 
     
In solidarity… 
  
Your Region 1 Bargaining Team 
CFI Local 39000, CWA-TNG 
  
Pedro Ramírez-Navas 
Daniel Kaufman  
Doris Vick  
Michael Ferreira  
Robert Guerrero  
Caren Sencer, Spokesperson
 

Region 1 Bargaining Update

May 11, 2018, Santa Fe Springs 

The Bargaining Committee met with Court Administration today in Santa Fe Springs, and the following is a synopsis of the latest developments in our contract negotiations: 

Caren Sencer, our spokesperson, has returned from bereavement leave and was present at today's session.
Tentative Agreements
Court Administration and your Bargaining Team reached the following tentative agreements:
  • Article 4 - Authorized Agents
  • Article 16 - Employment Status
  • Article 28.6 - Leaves of Absence
  • Santa Barbara Side Letter - Benefits
Article 23 - Education and Training Opportunities
The Court clarified that the up to 6 hours of continuing education offered by the Court in a calendar year qualify for CIMCE credit.
The Region is studying our proposal for reimbursement of continuing education costs.
 
Article 18 – Assignments 
The Region continues to study our proposal to remove this subject from current bargaining with an eye towards reopening this issue when the computerized assignment system is ready to look at.
Article 21 - Salary 
The wage proposal has not yet been resolved.  We continue to vigorously pursue longevity increases (steps).  At the last session we proposed a 2% adjustment for those certified/registered in more than one language.  Today the Court countered with 1% for each additional language pair.  We are studying their response.
 
Article 28 - Leaves of Absence
Traditionally the Court has paid for caucus time for up to five members of the Bargaining Committee to prepare for negotiations.  In 2017 Mr. Wiley (Region 1 Spokesperson) said that the Courts would not pay for this essential time.  The issue has continued to be raised throughout this round of negotiations.  Today Mr. Wiley stated that no additional organizational leave would be granted through the LA County Courts until the Local has paid the $11,217.29 at issue here.
  
Upcoming Bargaining dates
We hope to see you at our upcoming bargaining dates which have been confirmed for Monday, May 21 Tuesday, May 22 at the Santa Fe Springs Local office at 10 am.   “A” and “C” status interpreters should send in their RTOs today to observe the negotiations first-hand. 
     
Bargaining Meeting 
You will have an opportunity to meet this Saturday with members of the Bargaining Committee for a “State of Bargaining” report.  We will give an overview of where things presently stand in the negotiations process, and we will address questions you may have.  Remember to review the Bargaining Chart available in the Members Only section of the CFI member website. The chart will be updated to include today's results as soon as possible.

 

This Saturday meeting is open to all members in good standing of the union in Region 1.  Therefore, people from other regions, freelancers or associate members will not be permitted to attend.

The meeting is specifically to address the Region 1 contract bargaining and mobilization and will take place on Saturday, May 12 from 1:00 to 4:00 pm at the CFI Local 39000 offices located at 12215 N. Telegraph Rd., Suite 210, Santa Fe Springs, CA 90670.   

  
In solidarity… 
  
Your Region 1 Bargaining Team 
CFI Local 39000, CWA-TNG 
  
Pedro Ramírez-Navas 
Daniel Kaufman  
Doris Vick  
Michael Ferreira  
Robert Guerrero  
Caren Sencer, Spokesperson  

 

 

 

Region 1 Bargaining Update

April 30, 2018, Airport Courthouse

The Bargaining Committee met with Court Administration today, and the following is a synopsis of the latest developments in our contract negotiations:

 Article 21 - Salary
 
Region 1’s counterproposal regarding salary includes a Bonus Payment of 2% at ratification for “A” status employees and a prorated amount for “C” status employees.  Those in “F” status would receive a one-time payment of $500. 
 
They continue to offer a 2.5% adjustment effective the first pay period after ratification, a 2.25% adjustment 12 months later, and another 2% 12 months after that.  Region 1 rejected our proposal for longevity pay and we will continue to press for recognition that employees’ commitment and experience matters.
 
We proposed language to address the issue of employees being docked for arriving late when assignments were made the same day and their spokesperson stated that there was “sharp disagreement on that.”  He stated as clarification that interpreters are not being docked, but are being paid for hours worked, not for commute time to their assignment.  He suggested that we “take these matters to arbitration, and see what the arbitrator says.  Our answer is ‘NO’.”
 
We continue to request that employees certified or registered interpret in more than one language pair receive an enhancement and proposed a 1% increase for all hours worked or paid.
 
While LA County does not have an assigned interpreter coordinator we nevertheless proposed a 10% adjustment should that occur and 15% for San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties.  Santa Barbara currently has a coordinator (who is a member of our unit) who is paid an additional 10% for hours spent coordinating.
 
Article 4 – Authorized Agents
 
We agreed to an address change in which the Santa Fe Springs office address will be used for communication between Region 1 and CFI.
  
Article 18 – Assignments
 
As the automated assignment system is nowhere near ready, your Bargaining Committee recognized that continuing to discuss this matter was nonproductive.  Not wanting to delay contract negotiations further, we suggested a Side Letter Reopener on this issue.  Court Administration agreed to that and proposed 30 days’ advance notice on the implementation of an automated scheduling system. This would allow us to see the actual system, and bargain over the issue when the system can be observed and studied.
 
Article 26 ‒ Employees’ Benefits
 
The Court submitted a proposal to modify the existing language in the Santa Barbara side letter to the contract clarifying the fringe benefits the employees receive.  Interpreter employees in the Santa Barbara Superior Court receive fringe benefits at the same level as those Santa Barbara Court employees represented by SEIU Local 620.
 
Conclusion
 
The Region One Bargaining Committee would like to give a special shout out to our members Claudia Lancaster (A), Sonia Cruz, and Maya Fonseca (F) for their generous support today, and hope they found the experience enlightening as to the bargaining process.
 
Bargaining Meeting
 
You will have an opportunity to meet with your Bargaining Committee for a “State of Bargaining” report that will explore the attached chart in further detail. We will give an overview of where things presently stand in the negotiations process, and we will address questions and comments you may have.  Remember to review the Bargaining Chart available in the Members Only section of the CFI member website.
 
The meeting is specifically to address the Region 1 contract and mobilization and will take place on Saturday, May 12 from 1:00 to 4:00pm at the CFI Local 39000 offices located at 12215 N. Telegraph Rd., Suite 210, Santa Fe Springs, CA 90670.
 
In the meantime, we hope to see you at our upcoming bargaining dates on Friday, May 11 at the Santa Fe Springs Local office, and May 21st and 22nd at yet to be determined locations.
 
“A” and “C” status interpreters should send in their RTOs today to observe the negotiations first-hand.
 
In solidarity…
 
Your Region 1 Bargaining Team
CFI Local 39000, CWA-TNG
 
Pedro Ramírez-Navas
Daniel Kaufman 
Doris Vick 
Michael Ferreira 
Robert Guerrero 
Alejandro Delgado, Spokesperson

 
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