EBCLC Proudly Finalizes Its First Collective Bargaining AgreementWednesday, June 23, 2021
Berkeley, CA—In a victory for the entire organization, the East Bay Community Law Center (EBCLC) has reached a collective bargaining agreement. Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic and national discourse on valuing the dignity of workers, 80 staff members and executive team members came together to strengthen our work environment and culture.
“As a woman of color led and women of color centered organization, it was important that we get this right. We set terms that uplift our workers and hopefully, the entire legal services field. We also believe that this investment in our staff will directly improve the outcomes for our clients,” said Co-Deputy Director lead management negotiating team member Jay Kim.
EBCLC’s attorneys, social workers, paralegals, legal workers, and administrative staff unanimously ratified this agreement. The collective bargaining agreement prioritizes an equitable hiring process, flexible work schedules, supportive workload management, and a robust compensation package, including a competitive, transparent salary scale, and a $50,000 salary floor.
According to Co-Deputy Director and lead management negotiating team member Rosa Bay, “For almost 11 years, I’ve been honored to work alongside EBCLC’s staff, students, community partners, and clients to achieve a more just and resilient Alameda County. When I transitioned from staff member to management last year, I made it a priority to reach an agreement that aligned EBCLC’s internal and external values—racial equity, transparency, and valuing all essential labor. I celebrate this achievement and milestone in our organization’s history and am looking forward to our continued collaborative work ahead.
EBCLC Project Manager and lead staff negotiating team member Fernando Echeverria shared, “As a workplace dedicated to fighting injustice and systemic poverty and racism, the CBA provided EBCLC an opportunity to look inward and contend with the ways in which it was recreating the conditions we ardently advocate against. By engaging in courageous and sometimes difficult conversations, management and the workers of EBCLC were able to create a contract that visioned a new legal workplace where every worker is respected and able to work and live in dignity. I am extremely proud of the workers of EBCLC and thank management for their willingness to push the boundaries of what is possible in order to craft a just and equitable workplace.”
About East Bay Community Law Center
The East Bay Community Law Center (EBCLC) envisions a California where Black and Indigenous communities, and those at the intersection of multiple oppressions, are positioned to realize thriving, healthy, and dignified lives with a three-pronged approach: holistic legal services, robust clinical education, and community-centered policy advocacy. Bringing together legal experts across housing, health, immigration, education, youth justice, community economic empowerment, organizing, and social work case management, EBCLC works a to address the entire suite of legal and social service needs.