Chicago Park District Workers Bargaining Committee Reaches Tentative Agreement


On Tuesday, April 9, the Chicago Park District Workers Bargaining Committee reached a tentative agreement on a new five-year contract. SEIU Local 73 represents over 2,200 Park District workers and has been in contract negotiations for more than nine months.

According to members, their willingness to strike resulted in a contract providing wages that would improve recruitment and retention and restore programming for our communities.

The agreement will now go before the membership for a ratification vote.

“Over the past five years, our parks have experienced a 30% decline in the number of programs offered. This was largely due to the staffing crisis caused by low wages and inadequate benefits. However, with this new contract, we are beginning to reverse this trend. It’s a positive step towards improving the parks and the services our members provide, benefiting everyone in our communities,” said Dian Palmer, President of SEIU Local 73. “We extend our heartfelt gratitude to Mayor Brandon Johnson and his staff for their instrumental role in facilitating this agreement.” 

“Over the last five years, our Park District has closed a third of its programs because workers could get better paying jobs elsewhere than management was willing to pay,” said Sean Ortiz, Park Supervisor of 20 years. “This contract gives us the dignity and respect we deserve and provides the wages we need to make ends meet.”