IMPERIAL VALLEY, Calif. (13 On Your Side) – Paramedics who work for Gold Cross in Imperial County are threatening to go on strike within 10 days.
The paramedics union and company have failed to reach a new labor agreement after two months of negotiating.
The paramedics union says the negotiations broke down because the paramedics didn't get what they wanted. They're asking for a dollar pay raise, better work conditions and better equipment.
Paramedics tell 13 On Your Side they plan to walk off the job on July 28th.
As you may recall, in May paramedics voted—threatening to strike—if Gold Cross would not give them a one dollar pay raise.
Shortly after, the company and the union made progress in the negotiations, agreeing on limiting the number of hours part-timers can work.
Then yesterday, union representative Phil Farias said the company represented a "best friend and final contract," but did not meet the paramedics' demand.
"They didn't do a good enough job in addressing the financial part of the offer," Farias said. "So because of that, and because of limitations of the health and welfare, it is not an offer that the union is going to be able to recommend."
Right now, Pharias says paramedics want a three-year contract with a pay increase from $9.00 to $10.00 an hour, better work conditions and better equipment.
According to Farias, the Union will only offer a five year contract, but will not offer the $1.00 pay raise.
As a result, Farias says 80 paramedics are ready to walk off the job, leaving hundreds of residents without emergency services.
"Again, I cant put a time frame on it. Our goal would be for the strike to last less than a day. But still, like I tell my members. I'll tell you, they have to be prepared to be on strike for as long as it takes."
13 On Your Side tried speaking with Gold Cross General Manager John Goodall but he did not want to comment on-camera.
Again, Gold Cross paramedics plan on picketing on July 28.
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