Topsham law firm staff unionizes

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TOPSHAM — Paralegals and other staff at the law firm of McTeague, Higbee, Case, Cohen, Whitney & Toker have joined the International Association of Machinists.

“Just like other workers in shipyards, paper mills, or any number of work sites, we wanted to have a unified voice on the job and a seat at the table,” Carol Sanborn, paralegal and bargaining committee member said in a press release. “So that’s why we got together and organized a union.”

The union and the firm agreed to a three-year contract in September. Wage increases, a pension, improved benefits, and improved paid time off are among items included in the bargaining agreement, according to Sanborn’s announcement.

The IAW represents 3,900 workers in Maine, including shipbuilders at Bath Iron Works, paper mill and municipal workers, and the Maine Lobstering Union.