Kirsten Peterson, DEED Meet and Confer Chair, Region 18 Chief Steward
Outreach, Organizing and Advocacy
Last year we formed four subcommittees to address issues at DEED and developed over 40 new leaders in the process. Today those efforts are paying off because we’ve used our relationships with many of those leaders to gather information and insight about COVID-19 impacts across the state.
The DEED Meet and Confer has been meeting weekly to debrief, share stories we’re hearing from the field and enact our outreach, organizing and advocacy goals. We’ve succeeded in convincing DEED to close all careerforce locations to the public. We’ve advocated for dozens of members to be able to get COVID leave. I’ve established relationships with leaders and lines of communication to nearly every CareerForce location in the state (51 in total), so when Management makes decisions we hear about them within hours, not days. It has allowed us to act much more quickly on member concerns and escalate up the chain. We’ve built a constructive, if not positive, relationship with DEED HR so we can feel confident our concerns are being taken seriously.