Unionized staff at the Jewish Museum of New York voted to ratify their first contract with the Manhattan-based institution, securing scheduled pay increases of 3% each over the three-year life of the contract, plus additional benefits and protections.
Museum employees began pushing to organize between late 2021 and early 2022, citing job insecurity, wage inequality, working conditions, and a lack of transparent labor policies as their main points of concern. In May 2022, unionized workers voted to officially unionize under United Auto Workers (UAW) Local 2110, which also represents unions at the Whitney Museum of American Art, the New Museum of Contemporary Art, the Brooklyn Museum and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. , among others.
“The entire process of unionizing our workplace has been transformative for us as museum staff, and it is empowering to know that we have legally enforceable rights that support us and our work,” said Amelia Kutschbach, editor of the Jewish Museum, in a union statement shared with Hyperallergic.
The union’s contract summary outlines a 3% pay increase effective Oct. 1, on top of the same increase that went into effect July 1, as well as scheduled annual increases of 3% for 2024 and 2025. It also plans a 0.5% ratification bonus. distributed within three weeks following the ratification of the contract.
Another major victory for the union was a guaranteed minimum wage of $21 an hour for museum store and visitor services employees, which will increase annually by $1 for the duration of the contract, as well as a salary of $35 an hour. hour for art handlers and $39 an hour. Salary for editors. The museum’s part-time educators have outlined increases for scheduled museum visits and exhibit preparation that are scheduled for a 3% increase at the end of the contract.
“The Jewish Museum is pleased to have reached its first collective bargaining agreement with UAW Local 2110 that addresses the needs and concerns of its valued staff,” said museum interim director Darsie Alexander. Hyperallergic.
The Jewish Museum Union also managed to negotiate frozen healthcare premiums for employees for the duration of the contract, internal job offers for professional development, 12 weeks of paid parental leave for employees with more than three years of service at the museum and a labor and management committee to address concerns.