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May 19th, 2009

Central Valley Indymedia: Fresno is ground zero in labor struggle

by Mike Rhodes, Editor, Community Alliance Newspaper

Fresno is ground zero of an epic battle for the heart and soul of the union movement. Will 10,000+ Fresno homecare workers be represented by a union run by unelected, out-of-town bureaucrats who negotiate sweetheart deals behind closed doors with corporate CEOs? OR, will workers support the National Union of Healthcare Workers (NUHW) who is a member-driven organization that fights for better pay and benefits for their members?

Local healthcare union activists charge that the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) is run by unelected, out-of-town bureaucrats who negotiate sweetheart deals behind closed doors with corporate CEOs. Organizers and members of the National Union for Healthcare Workers (NUHW) believe labor unions should be militant, member-driven organizations that fight for better pay and benefits for their members. They are in a David & Goliath–like struggle with SEIU (aka Goliath), which has everything money can buy, but NUHW (aka David) has a secret weapon—the support of the workers.

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May 16th, 2009

Counterpunch: Fresno, the New Ground Zero

Ground zero in the California war between the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) and the new National Union of Healthcare Workers (NUHW) is now an election in the sprawling Central Valley city of Fresno, where in June 10,000 home healthcare workers will choose which union will represent them.

The election comes as the result of petitions signed in two weeks in February by 2500 Fresno County home workers – far more than the 1500 signatures required. These were delivered by NUHW supporters to the County on March 1 in accord with the requirements of the Public Employees Relations Act.

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May 15th, 2009

New video of our Founding Convention

This video tells the story of our founding convention, when more than 700 healthcare workers and leaders gathered in San Francisco to celebrate our record-breaking success and plan for the future. keep reading >

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May 9th, 2009

Fresno homecare providers rally to restore wages after Obama agency opposes cuts

Dozens of homecare providers joined disability advocates in Fresno on Thursday to call on the county and state to restore dangerous wage cuts after the Obama administration issued an opinion that the cuts violate the federal Recovery Act’s requirements.

“We need our elected officials to restore this funding immediately,” said Flo Furlow, a Fresno homecare provider and elected leader of NUHW. “Not just to protect providers, seniors, and people with disabilities, but to protect billions of dollars in badly-needed federal funding for other healthcare services. We’re standing together in our union to make that happen.”

John Wilkins, a local disability advocate, said, “We depend on homecare providers to help us live with dignity and independence, but these cuts are threatening to drive their wages so low they can’t provide for their own families. Advocates and healthcare consumers are proud to stand with homecare workers and their union, NUHW, in stopping these cuts.”

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May 7th, 2009

NUHW homecare providers and advocates call on state to restore In-Home Supportive Services after Obama Administration says cuts would violate federal Recovery Act requirements

Failure to reverse cuts could cost California billions in enhanced Medicaid funding

Fresno, Calif.—Homecare providers in the National Union of Healthcare Workers (NUHW) joined disability advocates in calling for the state to roll back dangerous cuts to homecare services in light of a federal government opinion that the cuts would violate requirements of the recently passed federal Recovery Act.

“We need the governor and the legislature to restore this funding immediately,” said Flo Furlow, a Fresno homecare provider and elected leader of NUHW. “Not just to protect providers, seniors, and people with disabilities, but to protect billions of dollars in badly-needed federal funding for other healthcare services. We’re standing together in our union to make that happen.”