HILL AIR FORCE BASE — Hill Air Force Base officials and representatives from American Federation of Government Employees Local 1592 recently agreed on a base supplement to the Master Labor Agreement.
“This agreement is focused on people first, which is always our goal. Our Air Force civilians accomplish great things here every day. This supplement solidifies the cooperation and teamwork we need to make that happen,” said Col. Ron Jolly 75th Air Base Wing and Installation commander.
The agreement covers working conditions for nearly 7,800 bargaining unit employees here. There are 18 articles — six articles are supplements to the 2012 AFMC Master Labor Agreement and 12 are specific to Hill AFB.
The local agreement covers general schedule and wage-grade bargaining-unit employees, whether or not they are union members. Articles address everything from shift assignments, work hours and overtime to fire protection personnel.
“This is not simply a rule book, this is a base partnership book and we’re excited to have it done,” said Monty Lewis, president of AFGE Local 1592. When the supplement is signed, it will be printed and made available as a booklet and electronically.
A team of installation leadership and personnel specialists met with union officials and union members from the shop floors for nearly two years to hammer out the document. One of the main goals was to ensure that the supplement was written in plain language, so supervisors and employees won’t need legal or personnel expertise to interpret the guidelines, Lewis said.
One of the major changes is a new streamlined process for changing individual shop work-hours based on mission requirements. Previously, any changes had to be bargained, whether there were employee concerns or not. This could take up to 60 days. Under the new agreement, if there are no employee concerns, new work hours can be implemented without an extended process, Lewis said.
Although all of these are important issues, Lewis said that employee health and safety remains the No. 1 priority.
“We want the same thing as the Air Force does: new workload, Hill being the best depot, delivering products and services to the warfighter at or under cost. But we will not sacrifice health or safety,” Lewis said.