New Year's Message from Executive Director, Shannon Douvier

When we look back on this year, I hope we can remember all we accomplished instead of how difficult things have been.  For many of us, after almost two years on the frontlines of this pandemic, this year was filled with stress, chaos, and fatigue.  Yet, together, the members of AFSCME Council 65 have accomplished amazing things. 2021 saw a rebirth of solidarity and collective action. You and your union siblings showed AFSCME can lead in Minnesota and South Dakota. 

AFSCME Dispatchers in Itasca County, pushed
for a working group to set training standards
to improve Minnesota’s emergency response system. Denied a pay increase in 2021, and lacking a voice in their workplace, workers at
Lake Region Hospital’s Cancer Care and Research Center organized and formed a union. Now after ratifying their first AFSCME contract, workers are seeing wage increases up to 12%.  Our Brown County local in South Dakota fought back their employers attempt to decertify their union, winning their election 26 to 1. Altogether AFSCME 65 had 14 new locals organize with us.

The way that you, our members, stand together to lift one another fills me with optimism for our union. Unprecedented corporate forces have targeted unions, public employees and healthcare workers. I expect that in 2022 and beyond, these efforts to silence workers and strip away your earned benefits will only intensify. It will take all of us standing together to fight for working families right to prosper.  When I see your commitment to our shared AFSCME 65 vision, I know we can face what’s ahead.

In Solidarity,

Shannon Douvier
Executive Director, AFSCME Council 65
AFSCME International Vice-President