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Guide to the Social Service Employees Union Records WAG.003

Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archive
Elmer Holmes Bobst Library
70 Washington Square South
2nd Floor
New York, NY 10012
(212) 998-2596

Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives

Collection processed by K. Kevyne Baar

This finding aid was produced using ArchivesSpace on January 07, 2021
Description is in English using Describing Archives: A Content Standard

 edited by Nicole Greenhouse to reflect additional administrative information and added archived websites  , November 2020

Scope and Content Note

Series I: Constitutions and Minutes, 1964-2005, is comprised of early constitutions and by-laws (pre-merger), the constitution of the merged unions and its amendments, and minutes of the Delegate Assembly (1969-2005), Executive Board/Executive Committee (1962-2005), and General Membership Meetings (1964-2005).

Series II: Bargaining Files and Related Arbitration Cases, 1938-1996, contains materials used in collective bargaining as well as the resultant contracts. Included are demands and proposals both general and specific to the various titles covered by the merged unions, along with background material, press releases, legal documents and arbitration cases related specifically to the collective bargaining process.

Series III: General Files, 1944-2006, consists of correspondence, files on committees of the union, files on union elections, press clippings with a special emphasis on child welfare, homelessness, and other major welfare issues, material on the strikes of 1965 and 1967, and documentation of the scandals that rocked DC 37 in the late 1990s. Prominent also in this section are the numerous routes the union chose to communicate with its members: leaflets used to inform as well as mobilize the membership, newsletters of the SSEU and of affiliated chapters, and "Recorded Union News," which provides information to members via a 24-hour telephone tape. Occupational Deferment Requests filed during the Vietnam War period can also be found in this series.

Series IV: Grievances, Arbitrations and Legal Cases (General), 1953-1999, includes correspondence pertaining to grievances, rebuttals and requests (1960-1996), arbitrations and various legal cases that do not fall under the umbrella of collective bargaining.

Series VI contains websites created by the union, including the scholarship foundation.


Series I is arranged chronologically within categories; series II-IV are arranged alphabetically.

The files are grouped into six series:

  1. I, Constitutions and Minutes
  2. II, Collective Bargaining and Related Arbitration Cases
  3. III, General Files
  4. IV, Grievances, Arbitrations, and Legal Cases (General)
  5. V, Unprocessed Material
  6. VI, Archived Websites