Lane County Workers Go On Strike

Oct 18, 2017

Lane County’s largest employee union is on strike Wednesday. Negotiations between American Federation of State County and Municipal Employees, AFSCME, and county leaders went through the night but no agreement was reached by this morning.

Workers picket in front of Lane County building Wednesday morning.
Credit Rachael McDonald

Workers are picketing in front of the county building.

Patt Riggs-Henson is president of the Lane County Chapter of the AFL-CIO and statewide AFCSME. She says the county’s offer of 3 percent pay raises is not comparable with other counties of similar size in Oregon.
Riggs-Henson: “It’s about fairness. And for some of our young women, women in their jobs, that are caring for some of the most vulnerable people. Their wages are not brought up to comparitables. And those are the ones that need it the most.”
The union represents nearly 700 workers, including nurses, mental health counselors, fee-collectors and planners. The county says it’s offering fair pay raises—with an offer that increases it payroll by about 7.8 millon dollars over 3 years. Additionally, workers are being asked to contribute between 20 and 70 dollars monthly toward health insurance. They currently don’t pay for their insurance. County and union leaders plan to meet again in mediation on Friday.

For information on Lane County services affected by strike, click here