CWA Local 1085 workers in Salem County, New Jersey, are fighting back against a dangerous proposal to privatize the County's 911 dispatching services and the nursing staff at the Salem County Correctional Facility. The proposal by the Salem County Freeholders threatens to outsource the jobs of 35 emergency call center dispatchers and 15 nurses in the county jail in a half-baked attempt to plug a hole in the County budget.
The county's privatization proposal would thrust dedicated, trained and experienced union workers into unemployment and replace them with workers with fewer qualifications and little experience.
CWAers have been building a robust grassroots campaign to save dispatching services and the nursing jobs. The last four Freeholder meetings have been packed with CWA members, county union workers, first responders and residents voicing their opposition to the outsourcing. At the last meeting, Freeholders unexpectedly tabled the budget that contained the cuts to the dispatchers and nurses that necessitated the privatization.
Members have also flooded the Freeholders phone lines with calls against the measure. Nearly 4,000 supporters have joined the "Supporting Salem County 911 Dispatchers" group in just one month.
CWA will continue to speak out against the continued threat to these jobs. The Freeholder Director is up for election this November, and CWA members promise not only to make their voices heard at the meetings but also at the ballot box.
CWA Local 1085 workers with supporters outside the June 1 Freeholder meeting in Salem County, New Jersey.