Multnomah County and AFSCME sign union contract for dentists



About 20 Multnomah County dentists represented by AFSCME Local 88 ratified a new contract Dec. 6 after several months of negotiating and a strike authorization vote. The two-year agreement provides bonuses totaling $10,000, as well as a 5% raise retroactive to July 1, 2023. Dentists will receive 1% to 4% cost of living raises on July 1, 2024, and July 1, 2025, based on the local inflation rate.

The contract also sets the total number of patients a dentist sees in a 10-hour shift to 21. During negotiations, the county had proposed increasing that number by 20%, or about four more patients, even though the county had already increased workload from 18 patients per shift. Dentists said adding even more patients would make it extremely difficult to adequately care for their patients, many of whom are Medicaid enrollees, uninsured, or homeless and may not be able to afford dental services elsewhere. 


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