Dear Food Bankers,

A new chapter is beginning for your work life at the Food Bank now that a majority of you have voted to unite in a union. In the spirit of open communication and transparency we are sending this message to everyone who is represented.

Our organizing efforts will continue, but now the focus will be on preparing for contract negotiations. Local 29’s Nat Naylor will be communicating with you in more detail about the next steps, but we have outlined the general process below. Keep in mind that even though you don’t have a contract yet, you will have union representation that protects your current wages, benefits and working conditions until something else is negotiated and approved by you.

What to Expect:

  • Certification: The NLRB should certify the election results in the next few days and OPEIU Local 29 will officially be recognized as your union.
  • Request to Bargain and Request Information: Once we receive official certification from the NLRB, OPEIU Local 29 will make an official request to bargain and request that the Food Bank provide basic information to help develop a contract proposal.
  • Meetings and Survey Process—Your Voice, Your Priorities: The contract survey process is very important. Every department has different issues and we need your input in putting together a contract proposal. We’ll talk more at our upcoming meetings about what the Bargaining Survey should ask and how it’s best distributed to ensure everyone has a say. The union will depend on engagement and active participation to provide priorities.
  • Nominate or Elect Co-workers for the Bargaining Team: Nat will discuss with you the role of the Bargaining Team, how best to ensure a representative team and the process for deciding a team.
  • Build a Contract Action Team (CAT): In addition to your Bargaining Team, you will have a Contract Action Team consisting of workplace leaders who will help distribute information, build support and assist the Bargaining Team in order to win a fair contract.
  • Meeting to Discuss Survey Results and Bargaining Process: Survey results will be compiled, and we will hold meetings to discuss and prioritize the responses.
  • Contract Bargaining Begins: Nat Naylor will discuss with you the bargaining timeline.
  • Vote on the Contract: Once a tentative agreement has been reached with SFMFB, you will review and vote on the results of bargaining.

To contact our OPEIU, Local 29 union organizer Andom “Nati” Kahsay, please reach him at: or (510) 393-1505.