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IUPAT Activist Pledge

As Union Members, we look out on our industry and see anti-union anti-worker forces making inroads into our communities, into my industry, and it is leading towards an era of wage stagnation, diminishing worker protections, growing income inequality.

The work of the convention is only talk unless we act unless we stand up and speak in one loud, unified voice.

We are union, and we can beat back anti-worker anti-union attacks. With our collective voices, we can drive the conversation; we can expand work opportunities, skills training, and win back market share.


I want to be a part of the fight against anti-worker anti-union forces. Therefore, I pledge to help my union to mobilize 20,000 activists annually, expand our skills training, engaging in large organizing campaigns, and fight for issues that directly affect me and my work opportunities.

As a proud member of the IUPAT, I pledge to help my union, by doing my part to help mobilize, organize, and train so that the IUPAT is the strongest union in my community, my state, and my country.

Public Sector Fall Recertifications


Type of Employer: All employers AEAs, K/12, Community Colleges

Collective bargaining agreement expiration date: June 30, 2021 June 30 – August 31, 2021

Employer must submit collective bargaining agreement by this date for election to be scheduled: August 24, 2020

PERB eFiles Notice of Intent to Conduct Election: August 26, 2020

Employer must email employee list by this date: September 2, 2020

CEO fee payment/ request for extension of payment due: September 14, 2020

PERB eFiles Direction of Election/ Notice of Election: September 16, 2020

Election Period: October 13 – October 27, 2020

Fall 2020 Retention and Recertification Election Schedule (telephone/web-based) All Employers: Contracts with Expiration Date of June 30, 2021 AEAs, K/12, Community Colleges with Expiration Date of June 30-August 31, 2021.

PERB will conduct a retention and recertification election by telephonic and web-based ballot. The schedule for this telephonic/webbased election is as follows:

August 24, 2020 All collective bargaining agreements must be emailed to the agency by this date.

August 26, 2020 PERB eFiles Notice of Intent. Employers may begin sending PERB initial voter lists to determine election fees.

September 2, 2020 Last day for Employer to submit initial list to determine the election fee. Last day for parties to object to Notice of Intent or, if no Notice of Intent was filed, to notify agency that an election should be conducted.

September 14, 2020 Last day for Employee Organization to pay the election fee. Last day to provide PERB with sufficient evidence of contract extension.

September 16, 2020 Direction/Notice of Election filed. Voter must be employed on this date in the bargaining unit to be an eligible voter unless the parties agree on a different eligibility date. Employers may begin sending PERB updated voter lists. Employer must notify Employee Organization when employees leave the bargaining unit.

September 23, 2020 Last day for Employer to update voter eligibility list.

October 6, 2020 Last day for Employee Organization to propose additions or deletions from voter list. Last day for the parties to mutually agree on any changes in the voter eligibility list. Last day for a party to challenge a voter’s eligibility.

October 13, 2020 Beginning of election period. Voters may begin to cast their ballots by calling the toll-free 7:00a.m. number or logging on to the voting website. The number and website will be provided in the Notice of Election.

October 27, 2020 End of election period. Voters must cast their ballot by phone or online prior to this time 9:00a.m. and date in order for the ballot to be counted. A PERB election agent will review the tally of the results at PERB’s office.

November 8, 2020 Last day to eFile objections to the election. Last day to eFile postelection challenges.

Last modified July 24, 2020


Question: Who is PERB?

Answer: The Iowa Public Employment Relations Board (PERB) is the neutral State agency responsible for administering Iowa’s collective bargaining laws as set forth in Iowa Code chapter 20.

Question: What are retention and recertification elections?

Answer: A retention and recertification election is an election required by Iowa law and initiated by PERB pursuant to Iowa Code section 20.15. In this election all eligible voters (employees in that job classification whether members of the union or not) will be asked whether they want to retain and recertify their current representative (union) as their exclusive bargaining representative.

Question: Who is conducting retention and recertification elections?

Answer: PERB has the legal responsibility of conducting the retention and recertification elections as directed by Iowa Code section 20.15.

Question: Does PERB have experience conducting elections?

Answer: PERB has been conducting elections since the 1970s. The first retention and recertification elections were held in the fall of 2017.

Question: Why is PERB using Election-America aka Yes Elections as part of the election process?

Answer: Election-America is an election services company with national and international experience for both public and private clients. PERB will be conducting hundreds of elections with thousands of voters in a very short time frame. Because PERB is a small agency with many other responsibilities aside from conducting elections, PERB requested the help of an election services vendor.

Question: When will I be voting in a retention and recertification election?

Answer: A retention and recertification election occurs approximately ten months prior to the expiration of a collective bargaining agreement between the employer and the certified representative. 2

Question: How will I receive notice about a retention and recertification election?

Answer: PERB will notify the employer and the certified employee organization (union) through PERB’s electronic-filing (e-filing) system about PERB’s intent to conduct the retention and recertification election. The employer and certified employee organization are required to maintain and update the representative or agent for service in the bargaining unit case file as necessary. After receiving the eligible voter list from the employer and receiving payment from the certified employee organization, PERB will then e-file a “Notice of Election.” The employer is required to post copies of the Notice of Election in the manner and locations customarily used for the posting of information to employees. Additionally, if the employer normally distributes information to employees by other means, such as by email, the employer is required to promptly distribute the notice to the employees in that manner as well. The “Notice of Election” will provide the method of voting (meaning whether the voter will be voting in-person, by mail, or by internet or telephone), the date, time, and place of the election period, and the purpose of the election.

Question: How will I know if I am eligible to vote?

Answer: Those employees who are in positions listed in the unit description as provided in the “Notice of Election” on the date or dates of eligibility are eligible to vote in the election. The employer provides the list of eligible voters to PERB. The employer and the certified employee organization may discuss and mutually agree to eligibility of employees. If you have questions regarding your eligibility, please speak to your employer or certified employee organization.

Question: How do I vote?

Answer: This varies by election. PERB carefully considers many factors when choosing the method of voting. The method of voting will be listed in the “Notice of Election.” The methods of voting are:

o On-site elections where the voter casts a ballot by going to the designated place at the designated date and time of the election.

o Mail elections where PERB mails the ballot to the voter and the voter returns the ballot by mail.

o Telephonic/Web-based elections where a voter casts a ballot by either calling the designated number or going to the designated website to cast a ballot. If the voter is unable to vote using the method selected, the voter must promptly contact PERB to arrange an alternate voting method.

Question: Why do most voters have to vote online or by telephone?

Answer: Telephone and online voting is easy, secure, and cost effective when PERB conducts many elections at the same time.

Question: Do I have to vote in a retention and recertification election?

Answer: No. An eligible voter is not required to vote in a retention and recertification election. However, if an eligible voter does not vote in the election, it is essentially the same as a “no” vote. The certified representative needs to have a majority of all eligible voters vote “yes” in order to be recertified.

Question: Will anyone know how I voted?

Answer: No, this is a secret ballot. No one, including PERB, will know if you voted “yes” or “no.” PERB will be able to confirm to the voter, and only the voter, if the voter has cast a ballot, but PERB does not know how a person voted.

Question: If I don’t vote, is that the same as voting “no”?

Answer: Correct. A non-vote essentially acts as a “no” vote. If an eligible voter does not vote in the election, it is essentially the same as a “no” vote because the certified representative needs to have a majority of eligible voters—not a majority of those voting in the election—vote “yes” to be recertified.

Question: How do I vote in a telephonic/web-based election?

Answer: Log on to call 1-877- 639-7161. The voting system is in operation 24 hours a day, 7 days a week during the voting period. You will be asked for information to verify you are an eligible voter. After successfully logging in you will be asked if you want to continue to be represented by (the name of your current union) for the purpose of collective bargaining. You will then be instructed on how to vote “yes” or “no” and asked to confirm your choice. After you confirm your choice, your vote will be electronically submitted.

Question: How long do I have to vote?

Answer: This depends on the method of voting and varies by election. If you are voting in a telephonic/web-based election, you will likely have two weeks to cast a ballot. If you are voting in a mail-ballot election, you will likely have three weeks from the date the ballot is mailed to you until it is due back to PERB. If you are voting in an on-site election, you will likely have one day to cast your ballot.

Question: Can I change my vote after I have submitted it?

Answer: No.

Question: What if I have trouble using the telephonic or web-based voting system?

Answer: Call the Election-America (aka YesElections) Help Desk at 1-800- 503-8671. It is available twenty-four hours a day/seven days a week during the election period.

Question: What does the employer have to do in a retention and recertification election?


1. The employer must update the representative or agent for service in the BU case file as needed.

2. The employer must provide an accurate list of the employees to PERB in a timely manner. The employer must also notify the 5 employee organization to let them know the list has been sent to PERB and notify the employee organization how many employees are on the list. The employer will be asked for a subsequent list and must provide that subsequent list if information has changed. After the second list, the employer must promptly update the employee organization if an eligible voter leaves employment prior to the close of the election.

3. The employer also must post and distribute notices to the affected employees. The only notice the employee receives, by law, is through these notices provided by the employer. The certified employee organization may also distribute this information, but is not required by law to do so.

4. The employer needs to provide PERB with the collective bargaining agreement. The receipt of the collective bargaining agreement triggers the recertification election process.

5. Employers must respond promptly to PERB’s inquiries throughout the election process.

Question: If the Employer sent the voter list to the certified employee organization, does it need to send the list to PERB?

Answer: Yes. Even if the Employer has provided the list to the certified employee organization, the Employer needs to send the list to PERB.

Question: Does the employee organization (“union”) have to pay for a retention and recertification election?

Answer: Yes. Iowa Code section 20.6 requires employee organizations to pay the fees required to cover the cost of certification elections, decertification elections, and retention and recertification elections. PERB rule 621—15.1 sets the fee amount.

Question: When and how will I know the results of a retention and recertification election?

Answer: Within a few days of the close of the election period PERB will electronically file the tally of ballots that the employer is required to post 6 and distribute. PERB will also have the unofficial results available on our website,

Question: What does the employee organization (“union”) need to do to “win” a retention and recertification election?

Answer: The employee organization must have a majority of all eligible voters (not a majority of voters), vote “yes” in favor of recertification.

Question: What happens if the employee organization (“union”) wins a retention and recertification election?

Answer: The employee organization continues as the representative for the bargaining unit.

Question: What happens if the employee organization (“union”) loses a retention and recertification election?

Answer: The employee organization is decertified and is no longer the bargaining unit’s representative. The contract between the employee organization and the employer is void and unenforceable.

COVID-19: General President Rigmaiden's Call For Congress To Take Immediate Action

One of the largest and most politically active building trade unions in North America has issued a clarion call for U.S. Congressional action to support workers who have been impacted by COVID-19. Read the full statement

The International Union of Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT) represents construction workers in fifty U.S. states and in every Canadian province. Today, the union has issued a four stage response platform, titled as the “IUPAT BOLD ACTION PLATFORM FOR WORKING FAMILIES” which the union says is essential to protecting the economy and working families, and which they hope to see reflected in any upcoming stimulus package.

In conjunction with the release of the response platform, IUPAT General President Ken Rigmaiden issued the following statement, calling on Congress to act.

“COVID-19’s impact is financially devastating for millions of working families in our industry and beyond who are now grappling with tremendous uncertainty about what their paychecks, health care, and future will hold. In just one week, we have already seen the economic impact to our industry through widespread and sudden layoffs in many areas of the country.

The last time our nation faced a similar crisis, millions of workers were left with nothing. In the meantime, CEOs and Wall Street got billions of taxpayer dollars to cover their losses and pay their bonus checks. We must not let this historic pattern of workers being left behind repeat itself. All workers must be afforded basic human rights by their government in the face of this crisis -- as opposed to just another bailout for the corporate elite.”

Rigmaiden’s statement continues:

“Right now, large corporations are lining up with their hands out for federal aid, while workers are losing their jobs, their health insurance, and their economic security. Our membership works in every sector of the US economy from hospitality, retail, real estate, infrastructure, to the public sector. We will fight to ensure our members, and workers across this country, are not left behind by Congress.

The IUPAT will be among the legions who will be calling for workers’ basic human rights to be put first. Together, if Congress takes bold action now to support working families, we can get through this crisis and ensure our health, financial and economic well being.”

- Ken Rigmaiden, General President, International Union of Painters and Allied Trades

The IUPAT has established the Finishing Industries Disaster Relief Fund to assist brothers and sisters who face serious financial need as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and give our members a platform to lend a helping hand to one another. Our brothers and sisters need our help. Will you answer the call?

If you can, please consider donating to the fund. If you cannot contribute, please spread the word to friends and family. Our brothers and sisters are in dire need, and any amount counts to help them aid their families through these difficult times.

The IUPAT is constantly monitoring the situation to provide our members with the most up-to-date information and resources to help. We have suspended dues, approved Annuity Fund withdrawals, and established call centers to field members’ questions and connect them with resources. Now, we all must support our fellow union members because our union sticks together in times of need. That’s what unions are for.

We all hope that you, and your families, are staying safe and healthy.


-Ken Rigmaiden, IUPAT General President