FairVote Minnesota, Minnesota Guild Reach Agreement on First Union Contract

Comprehensive agreement covers wages, benefits, work rules and more

Saint Paul, MN (July 19, 2021) – FairVote Minnesota is pleased to have reached agreement with the Minnesota Guild on a first contract covering the organization’s field organizer and regional organizing director positions. The two-year contract, which becomes effective as of July 25, includes salary increases; seniority provisions; layoffs and severance terms; technology allowances; and scheduling protections. The agreement also brings into a contractual context a number of existing benefits and other terms of employment provided by FairVote Minnesota – such as medical and dental insurance and paid parental leave – and expands the eligibility of some of those benefits to part-time positions within the organization.

“FairVote Minnesota strongly supports our employees’ rights to opt for collective bargaining,” said Jeanne Massey, FairVote Minnesota’s executive director. “We immediately voluntarily recognized the union as our employees’ bargaining representative and hired labor counsel with extensive experience specifically assisting progressive nonprofit organizations in labor relations, including compliance and contract bargaining. Among these organizations are MN Voice, MN Youth Collective, and Clean Water Action.

“Our bargaining sessions were professional and allowed us to reach agreement on the terms of an initial contract that will reinforce FairVote MN’s continued mission to support – and strengthen – democracy while at the same time providing assurance to our organizers and regional directors of benefits and working conditions important to them. 

“Like many organizations that do campaign work, much of our work, staffing, and funding is seasonal and cyclical, largely driven by the electoral and legislative calendars. That includes the work done by our field organizers and regional organizing directors.  When they were hired it was with the knowledge that their work was scheduled to end after the 2020 campaign season; but we were able to extend the five people in the bargaining unit for work through the legislative session.  That fieldwork and funding ended with the close of the legislative session.  Because it was clear from the outset that these engagements would be time-limited, it was important to both parties that provisions addressing layoffs, severance, and rights of recall were included in the first contract. When the tempo of our work accelerates once again, and we have in place the needed funding, we will offer recall to affected team members in accordance with the provisions of our new contract.”

About FairVote Minnesota

FairVote Minnesota works for a stronger democracy through public education and advocacy for electoral reform. We specifically advocate for Ranked Choice Voting, a system proven to be more inclusive, democratic, and representative than our current plurality electoral system. We support RCV and other democracy reforms that promote greater participation, majority rule, and proportional representation. 

We are a nonprofit, nonpartisan grassroots organization that engages hundreds of volunteers and thousands of supporters. Together, we work to educate voters and advance electoral reform at all levels in Minnesota.