Just six months ago we were in the midst of a 40 day strike. More than 200 members of the Legal Services Staff Association (LSSA) – lawyers, paralegals, secretaries, receptionists, process servers, social workers, maintenance workers, and other non-management employees of Legal Services NYC – were on the picket lines fighting for fair health care, retirement, job security, and respect for our work and our clients.
The 40 day strike and the months leading up to it were naturally marked by challenge and struggle. But those days were also filled with solidarity, perseverance, and triumph: union members stood firmly together to protect the most vulnerable among us.
LSSA‘s strike fund supported our members and sustained us during the 2013 strike. During the time we were without pay and LSNYC had terminated our health care coverage, the union ensured that no union member was evicted, lost their utilities, or was forced to go without necessary medical treatment.
The solidarity of our members and allies – and the financial support from our strike fund – enabled us to keep fighting for the just contract we and our clients deserved. We successfully defended health care and retirement benefits that management had sought to slash, and won new terms that will protect unionized employees in the event of future layoffs. Our victory helps us better serve our clients, and makes it possible for us to have long-term careers at Legal Services while supporting our families.
The end of 2013 signals the beginning of the inevitable challenges that await us in 2014 and beyond.
Both Legal Services NYC and MFY Legal Services will be at the bargaining table in 2014 and it is incumbent on us to do everything we can to rebuild our strike fund so we can be as strong, unified, connected, and prepared as possible.
We ask you to please consider donating to the LSSA strike fund today. Thank you for supporting workers and for helping to make our organizing possible.