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September 23rd, 2009

Open letter to Leon Chow from community leader Warren Mar

Warren Mar is a longtime labor and community leader in San Francisco and a board member of the Chinese Progressive Association. Click the link below to read the text of his open letter to SEIU-UHW Homecare Division Director Leon Chow.


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September 23rd, 2009

SEIU backs out of first NLRB election against NUHW

To avoid landslide defeat, SEIU asks labor board to remove them from ballot at Los Alamitos Hospital
    
Los Alamitos, Calif.—In the first contest between SEIU and the National Union of Healthcare Workers (NUHW) overseen by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), SEIU has abandoned its effort after failing to win any support among environmental services workers at Los Alamitos Hospital.

“SEIU never intended to represent us, they just wanted to stop us from forming a union with NUHW,” said Mercedes Cornejo, a housekeeper at the hospital. “I can’t believe that so-called union leaders would try to stand in the way of workers like me who want a voice to protect our wages and jobs.”

Employees of Los Alamitos Hospital subcontractor Hospital Housekeeping Systems (HHS) had never been part of a union before they filed petitions to join NUHW in March. An election had been scheduled for May, but SEIU filed frivolous “blocking charges” with the NLRB to delay the election. When the NLRB lifted the blocking charge, SEIU petitioned for a spot on the ballot with signatures of support from only two workers.


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September 23rd, 2009

Caregivers ask Supes to investigate secret union contract

SEIU-UHW stages first of three rigged votes to push through agreement kept secret from 5,000 homecare providers

Santa Rosa, Calif.—More than a dozen homecare providers spoke out in front of the Sonoma County Administration Building Tuesday morning, asking County Supervisors for help in finding out details of a secret union agreement by SEIU-UHW that could reduce their wages and benefits over the next two years.

“Our union should represent our best interests, but SEIU-UHW refuses to let us see the entire contract, just a summary before we vote on it,” said Arin Stevens, a homecare provider in Sonoma County for 22 years. “We worked hard to get these wages and benefits and don’t want them to be bargained away behind our backs.”


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September 21st, 2009

Sonoma Co. caregivers ask Board to investigate secret union contract

Homecare providers spoke out in front of the Sonoma County Administration Building Tuesday morning, asking County Supervisors for help in finding out details of a secret union agreement by SEIU-UHW that could reduce their wages and benefits over the next two years.

Providers will never be shown the actual agreement between SEIU-UHW and the County, and will only be allowed to vote after sitting through a sales pitch by union officials. The agreement would reportedly allow the County to slash pay by $2 an hour just one year after the contract is ratified, and take away workers’ Kaiser health plan and replace it with a cheaper insurance scheme that healthcare advocates have called on the Attorney General to investigate

Click the link below to read more and hear from other Sonoma County homecare providers.


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September 21st, 2009

Beyond Chron: SEIU “falsifies claims of NUHW’s alleged internal problems”

by Randy Shaw

After a bruising and expensive struggle in Fresno, SEIU now claims that rival NUHW is “coming apart at the seams.” According to SEIU, NUHW’s failures have “sparked intense infighting and finger-pointing,” and “the focus has now turned to the question of whether the organization can survive. ” Is this wishful thinking, or an accurate assessment? Since forming last January, NUHW has been frustrated in its efforts to win members by SEIU filing NLRB petitions preventing the holding of decertification elections. The lack of members has left NUHW without funding to maintain staff, which has required some of its organizers to seek other jobs. But SEIU exaggerates and even falsifies claims of NUHW’s alleged internal problems, and while there is credence to its charges that NUHW has not met expectations to date, its latest salvos appear geared to break the spirits of NUHW staff and supporters. Here’s what’s really going on.