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Hamden School Workers Ratify Contract

For Hamden’s school cafeteria workers, a good contract is about more than money. It’s about respect.

With a new four-year collective bargaining agreement in place, the workers, who belong to Local 1303-275 of Council 4, feel like they’ve accomplished their goals.

“We want to be treated as professionals,” said negotiating team leader Toni Wood, a 19-year veteran working at Church Street Elementary School. “That was the premise we stood by during negotiations.”

Local 1303-275 members unanimously ratified their new agreement with Whitson’s Food Services on Sept. 22.

The contract includes general wage increases of 3% for each year of the contract along with a 10% increase in the employer’s contribution toward the health insurance premium cost share.

The Local 1303-275 Negotiating Team included Annarose Ferrucci, Sereader Green, Mary Ellen Herpok, Alexis Hoyesen, Toni Wood and Donna Yatcko.

“Whitson’s management representatives were impressed with how much our members care about their jobs and doing them professionally,” said Council 4 Staff Representative Donald Sevas, who served as the union spokesman during negotiations.

“These were not easy negotiations, but we’re very pleased with the contract,” said Local 1303-275 President Alexis Hoyesen. “We stuck to our guns.”

The bargaining unit represents 27 cafeteria workers in the Hamden schools. “We wouldn’t do this job if we didn’t love the kids,” Wood added.

Local 1303-275 members review their contract with Council 4 Staff Rep Donald Sevas.

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