“Community Voices: Save Legal Services” Event

Striking members of the Legal Services Staff Association will hold Community Voices: Save Legal Services Wednesday, June 12, 2013, from 2-2:30pm, on the steps of City Hall featuring clients and community organizers who have benefited from civil legal services provided by the striking advocates of Legal Services NYC.

Following the event, at 2:40, there will be a procession to the office of Board Chair Joseph Genova, One Chase Manhattan Plaza, at the corner of Liberty and William Streets, where striking LSSA members and clients will rally from 3:00 to 4:00.

Members of the Legal Services Staff Association (LSSA), a unit of the National Organization of Legal Services Workers/UAW Local 2320 (NOLSW), which represents more than 200 attorneys, paralegals, clerical, and administrative staff at Legal Services NYC, the primary provider of civil legal services to low-income families and the elderly in New York City. NOLSW, a local of the United Auto Workers, represents 4,000 people working at legal services, advocacy, and human services organizations in 26 states.

Legal Services NYC has forced its employees on strike for the first time in nearly 20 years and has taken the unprecedented step of cutting off striking employees’ health care without notice. Striking employees are now in their fourth week on strike since May 15, 2013, after membership overwhelmingly rejected demands for unprecedented concessions, including significant cuts to health care coverage for particularly vulnerable members and families, higher employee payments to health care premiums, a 29% reduction to 403(b) retirement contributions, and zero cost of living increases to salaries. At the same time, LSNYC expects at least $10.5 million in working capital surplus at the close of 2013, yet refuses to guarantee that management will bear a proportionate share of any future layoffs that may become necessary. Currently, there is one manager for every three union employees citywide.

Members remain committed to reaching an agreement that allows them to return to work serving New York City’s low-income families, elderly, and individuals.