Maine Paralegals Secure Gains, Ratify New Agreement

First row from left: Local S89 members Suzanne Pray, Katrina Johnson and Ellen Campbell (Negotiating Committee Member); back row from left: Claire Marshall (Chief Steward) and Carol Sanborn (Negotiating Committee Member)

Legal professionals who are members of IAM Local S89 employed at McTeague-Higbee, a Topsham, ME law firm that has represented organized labor in Maine for decades, unanimously ratified their second collective bargaining agreement.

The new three-year accord features wage increases of 3.25 percent the first year and 3 percent in each of the next two years, as well as increased contributions to the IAM pension plan, continuation of the IAM Benefits Trust Healthcare Plan, grievance and arbitration procedures, seniority provisions and paid time off.

“We attribute this excellent result to the effective negotiation skills of District Lodge 4 Assistant Directing Business Representative George Edwards,” said Bargaining Committee Member and paralegal Carol Sanborn. “The good-faith approach to negotiating this contract by the law firm, and an awareness that collective bargaining is good for both sides of the table will serve as a role model for other employers.”

“Congratulations to ADBR George Edwards, Carol Sanborn, and the Bargaining Committee on a job well done,” said DL 4 Directing Business Representative Dave Sullivan. “This is a perfect example of workers from all walks of life, coming together to organize, and negotiating contracts that improve their everyday lives on the job, and at home.”

The Topsham law firm specializes in employee/plaintiff-oriented labor law, workers’ compensation, discrimination, and personal injury cases, and has enjoyed a long relationship with Maine AFL-CIO, and its affiliated unions.