Housekeepers and dietary workers demand fair treatment from Tenet Healthcare hospitals

Fountain Valley Regional Medical CenterOctober 22, 2020

In a powerful show of solidarity, NUHW-represented housekeeping and dietary workers recently delivered a petition to the chief executives of three Tenet Healthcare hospitals, calling on the Fortune 500 company to bring their jobs in-house.

Despite having $2.2 billion in cash reserves, Tenet subcontracts out housekeeping and dietary work to the firm Compass, which pays its employees lower wages and offers poorer healthcare benefits than what Tenet has agreed to provide for its direct employees. After NUHW-represented housekeepers and dietary aides compelled USC Keck Medical Center to bring them in-house — a move that won workers 15 percent average wage increases and significantly better health and retirement benefits — Tenet workers are mobilizing to do the same at Fountain Valley Regional Medical Center & Hospital, Los Alamitos Medical Center and Lakewood Medical Center.

At Fountain Valley, where NUHW represents more than 600 direct Tenet employees, several of them joined their Compass colleagues to deliver the petition.

“I’m here to support my colleagues,” said Justin Evans, a distribution tech at Fountain Valley. “They work hard for patients; they put themselves in harm’s way, but this hospital and Tenet Healthcare don’t treat them fairly. They outsource their jobs to multiple subcontractors over the years that pay poverty wages. That’s not right, but we’re here to make it right.”

The workers who are subcontracted to Compass are planning their first public action for November as they continue their fight to become direct Tenet employees.

“We’re here to demand equal treatment,” said Julie Silva, an EVS Attendant at Los Alamitos. “We are disinfecting this hospital during a pandemic, but we cannot even afford healthcare for our families. We want to be treated equally. And we want to be treated fairly.”