September 21, 2010
By an overwhelming majority, 245 Montgomery County employees have voted this month to form a union with AFSCME Council 13.
The unit includes deputy sheriffs and administrative support personnel in the sheriff’s department, clerk of courts, district attorney’s office, public defender, coroner and other offices.
The workers’ resounding message to the county is that they want – and deserve – a real voice in the decisions affecting their workplaces. One of the primary concerns in seeking union representation was the rising cost of health care. Another is lack of respect in the sheriff’s department.
David Fillman, executive director of Council 13 and an AFSCME International vice president, calls the vote a “sweet victory” for the workers. “Montgomery County is one of the richest in the nation, but it isn’t reflected in the employees’ pay and benefits. Now – on to organizing the rest of the county!”
Council 13 already represents approximately 120 adult and juvenile probation officers and domestic relations hearing officers in Montgomery County.