Hogan Cuts Pay of Low Wage Springfield Dietary Workers On Same Day $2.5 Billion Dollar Surplus Announced

Throughout the pandemic, Governor Hogan's lack of respect for frontline workers has been made very clear. Whether it was underpaying emergency pay, the poor rollout of DBM's response pay, or a 5% pay cut, Governor Hogan has made his intention to balance budget problems on our backs.

Throughout this crisis, AFSCME Council 3 members have never hesitated to report to work despite the many unclear and unknown risks of exposure. Our union has been fighting for any workers required to report to their physical workplace to receive hazard pay. We have written letters, marched, submitted letters to the editors, and even filed the largest grievance ever to fight back against this unfair form of compensation.

One of the largest groups fighting back was dietary workers in congregate care facilities who have been deemed eligible for response pay by the Department of Budget and Management but denied the pay differential because management deemed they were believed to have the opportunity to socially distance. Many frontline workers know this is untrue and in fact, dietary workers recently conducted a letter-writing campaign to invite managers to join dietary staff on the frontline to walk a day in their shoes. Management did not respond to the invitation and this week announced the pay cuts.

This week, staff at Springfield Hospital Center announced an audit mysteriously conducted in the last 3 months that found that Springfield was overpaying response pay to the dietary workers. These workers had been properly compensated, unlike other dietary departments prior to this audit. Meaning as a result of the audit by HR, MDH will be seeking overpayment from frontline staff reporting during the worst pandemic in 100 years.

AFSCME Council 3 members are COVID-19 heroes. The dietary staff at every congregate care facility in the state are COVID-19 heroes. Heroes deserve better. Especially in light of Wednesday, September 29th's announcement that Maryland will close the fiscal year with a $2.5 billion dollar surplus. This means despite the surplus, Governor Hogan will be effectively cutting the pay of some of the lowest-paid state employees.

Here are THREE things you can do to help fight back:

1. Take the pledge and help us reach our goal of 10,000 Marylanders standing behind Council 3 COVID-19 Heroes 

2. RSVP to join our rally to fight for raises and respect for COVID-19 heroes on October 20th, 2021 at 6 pm in Baltimore 

3. Share this video from Brian Leach one of the members affected at Springfield Hospital Center speaking out on your social media to help spread the word!