A union is about building towards something

Ask Terrance Myrick about how things are going at work and, more often than not, in just a few seconds he will steer the conversation to AFSCME.

That is because the Local 2941 member in Jacksonville has learned firsthand how being a union member is about investing in your job not just for today but for the future as well.

“Anybody I talk to I tell them that they need sign that card because being part of AFSCME is, yes, about bargaining a good contract, but it is also about enforcing that contract and making sure your tomorrow is better than your today,” said Myrick, who has been a member since soon after he was hired in 2014.

When Myrick started with the Duval County School Board he was a food processing worker. But, after some experience and determination he became a warehouse clerk. More responsibility, harder work, but also better pay.

The only problem was that the $2.50 per hour pay difference was not showing up in his paycheck as his job classification had not changed. Myrick talked to his local president and they, along with AFSCME Florida staff, started the process of getting him the pay he was due.

“It wasn’t easy but that is why I pay my dues – to have someone there to stand with me when I need them to,” said Myrick.

Because Myrick and his fellow Local 2941 members have focused on growing their voice at the job by more than doubling membership in under two years, his case took time but he knew he would be successful in the end.

Not only did Myrick receive the change in pay, he also got back pay for all the hours he was working out of classification.

“When people ask me why join the union I simply tell them my story. I tell them that the job I’m doing is thanks to the support of my union. I tell them that the pay I am getting in thanks to my union. Dues are about investing in yourself. A union is about building towards something. If you want to go from A to B in this world you can try and go it alone but if you want to actually get there, it’s always better to travel with your union.”