Employees with St. Joseph County public safety consortium vote to unionize

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By: Krystal Vivian kvivian@953mnc.com

Emergency dispatchers and other people employed in the St. Joseph County Public Safety Communications Consortium have voted to unionize with the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees.

Eighty percent of the consortium voted to unionize, 30 percent more than needed, the South Bend Tribune reported.

The vote to unionize comes after dispatchers have made mistakes since the consortium began overseeing the two dispatch centers in the county in January. Some have pointed to mandatory overtime (the PSCC is in the red more than $170,000 on its overtime budget) and staffing shortages as blame for at least part of the problem, according to the Tribune.

Others have blamed Todd Geers, the executive director of the consortium.

“The problem is not a dispatch problem,” Cory Bair, with South Bend FOP Lodge 36, told the Tribune. “The problem is the man running the show doesn’t have management skills.”

Find out more about the vote to unionize and what could happen next in the full story from the South Bend Tribune.