SEIU Local 503 votes not to merge with SEIU Local 49


At a Feb. 1 meeting of the General Council of 47,000-member Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 503, delegates voted 118 to 75 not to pursue a merger with 10,000-member SEIU Local 49.

SEIULocal 503 represents state workers, home care workers and nursing home workers statewide, while Local 49 represents janitors, security guards and hospital support workers mostly in the Portland area.

Leaders of the two unions had been discussing a merger since 2012, and members of both unions engaged in a process of internal and joint discussions about the benefits and mechanics of merger, or “unification” as it was termed.

Local 503’s Executive Board recommended moving forward with the merger, but did not find majority support for it on the General Council. Local 49 was preparing to take the issue to members, but the General Council vote ends discussion of a merger for now.


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