After conducting the "Exempt" vs. "Non-exempt" vote for the Rehabilitation Therapist Task Force Outreach Committee, the Election Committee received four protests. Below (and to follow) are the protests and the Election Committee’s responses to each of the protests.
Protest #2 filed on November 13 by Kim Shin:
Dear Emiko or to whom it may concern,
My name is Kim Shin and I am an AFSCME local 2620 steward and an RT In Vacaville California. I believe that this the integrity of this recent voting for/against EXEMPT status has been compromised in numerous ways. I personally, was given misinformation on the telephone by Shirl Martinez on October 24, 2017 regarding deadlines dates/times for requesting a duplicate ballot etc. Being a steward, I disseminated this information( have emails to document)to my fellow co-workers and it was incorrect – this could have directly affected the voting process. I personally know of two employees who did not even receive ballots initially for some reason -they have been living at the same mailing address for years receiving union mail at other times. Also, It was reported that The ballots were kept in a cardboard box ? taped shut- that doesn’t sound very secure to me. In addition, the ballots collected were not delivered to a neutral PO box, but the Burbank office – which is not impartial or secure. I also did some very brief cross-checking of votes received/tallied and verified there were at least two members from my institution that were not accounted for at all that sent ballots in on time. There were dozens of votes that were also disqualified for reasons that I find questionable and likely made by a subjective party. I question the conduct of this election and how it was carried out.
It is for these reasons and others I can elaborate on upon request that I am protesting and ask that the recent vote be disqualified. It is only fair that the voting process take place in a clearly defined, unbiased, secure manner. Since this did not happen I am respectfully requesting that this vote set aside and a new election held.
The Election Committee requested supporting evidence. The supporting documentary evidence received was five written statement affirming that their ballots had been mailed. The written statements received were from Candice Bain, Hiromi Itoh, Maria Loya, Shari Borkin, and Natalie Pio. Of those five members, two ballots were received, two ballots were not received and one became a member after the deadline and is not one of the affected classification.
The Election Committee’s response:
1. Regarding misinformation being provided by Shirl Martinez via phone:
All pertinent information was contained in the e-blasts which were e-mailed on October, 2, October 6, and October 16. The information on the e-blasts was also posted on Facebook and on the AFSCME Local 2620 web site on the same dates. The e-blasts and posts all instructed to e-mail the Election Committee for questions and additional information.
2. As for two employees who did not receive ballots initially:
There could be several reasons as to why an employee did not receive a ballot: Do they belong to AFSCME or another union? Are they fair share payers or members? If they are members, did they receive a ballot after requesting a duplicate? Did Local 2620 have their current mailing address on file initially? We would need specific information.
3. As to the "ballots being kept in a cardboard box which was taped shut," which does not sound secure" to you:
There are no guidelines as to what constitutes a "secured" ballot box. The ballot box prepared and used is consistent with ballot boxes used in past elections/votes.
4. "The ballots collected were not delivered to a neutral PO box, but the Burbank office-which is not impartial or secure":
The Burbank office is impartial, because it is Council 57’s office, not Local 2620’s. The mailbox can only be opened with a key, which only Council 57 staff Shirl Martinez, Teresa Munoz and AFSCME Local 2620 staff Lisa Trujillo have access to.
5. You "did brief cross-checking of votes received/tallied and verified there were at least two members from (your) institution that were not accounted for at all that sent ballots in on time."
You do not mention how you obtained a list of the members’ names whose votes were received/tallied, what the names of the "at least two" members are and how you verified that their ballots were sent in on time. Further, there was no deadline set for when ballots could be mailed in, only for when they were received by.
6. You state that "There were dozens of votes that were also disqualified for reasons that (you) find questionable and likely made by a subjective party":
You don’t mention which votes were disqualified, what the reasons were for which they were disqualified and which subjective party you are referring to who disqualified votes. All decisions made during an Election Committee are made by the Election Committee, not unilaterally by one party.
The Election Committee