On December 3, 2019, UPE met with the County to discuss the rollout of evening hours to the library. The County shared that back in 2018 the library conducted a survey of library customers with responses overwhelmingly in support of extended evening hours. As a result, the Board of Supervisors asked that an evening hour pilot be developed to support the community needs. The pilot will be a six-month pilot in five of the twelve libraries. The extended hours will be 10:00 am-8:00 pm once a week instead of 10:00 am-6:00 pm. However, the Merced location will have two extended evenings as they are the support location for the outlining libraries.
UPE and the County had discussions regarding the shift change and the impacted employees. The County advised that staff would rotate the evening shift. UPE proposed rotation on a monthly basis with the employee with the most seniority at each library having the option to select first. However, UPE also discussed that if a weekly rotation worked better for the employees that that option would be available. The County agreed with what was proposed and acknowledged that they are willing to be flexible with the staff at the impacted locations. The County also shared that there will not be any added duties and that those assigned at each location will not be required to move around to other locations as those changes are hard for the employee and the public.
UPE also discussed safety concerns with the later evening hours. The County shared that currently Merced is the only location with security. If safety concerns arise at the other locations due to the evening hours, they will be addressed appropriately.
The pilot is expected to begin sometime in January after the employees and public receive notification. The County will provide an update in May. UPE will assess and meet again if necessary. Thank you to our Board Members Nancy Buendia and Lisa Sykes for participating on behalf of our Unit 3 members.