National press covers our legal victory at Kaiser
July 23rd, 2011
Brothers and Sisters,
Across the country, newspapers are covering our legal victory this week and reporting on SEIU’s illegal conduct in our election at Kaiser, including the Washington Post, the New York Daily News, the San Jose Mercury News, Democracy Now, In These Times and BeyondChron.
The reason for all this press coverage is simple. The judge ruled that SEIU and Kaiser’s conduct was illegal. We told the truth, and now the world is hearing about what we experienced.
As I shared the news with my co-workers this week, it felt great to see so many people in red, and feel so much solidarity from my union brothers and sisters.
It also feels good to know that across California, 4,000 of us at Kaiser are already members of NUHW.Did you know that NUHW is now the fourth-largest union at Kaiser Permanente?
It’s true, and we have important work to do together. While Kaiser has made over $5 billion in profits in just the last 27 months, that’s not stopping management from proposing takeaways for Kaiser healthcare workers. Our sisters and brothers in the CNA just put out this leaflet explaining Kaiser’s proposed pension takeaways. Please read it, it has some eye-opening information about Kaiser’s proposals for our future.
After SEIU colluded with management to deny our right to a fair election, our choice is clear. We’re moving forward with NUHW to stand up for a fair contract for all healthcare workers at Kaiser.
Mell Garcia, Medical Assistant, Kaiser Hayward
National Union of Healthcare Workers
P.S. Here’s a rundown of national news coverage of the judge’s decision:
Washington Post: Judge Rules against SEIU in California fight
“A judge ruled this week that the Service Employees International Union improperly coerced workers caught in the middle of SEIU’s high-stakes turf battle with a breakaway union in California, potentially invalidating a 2010 election involving 43,500 employees.”
New York Daily News: Union battle over Kaiser Permanente hospital system is David vs. Goliath affair
“Judge Lana Parke ruled that SEIU staff had misled workers by warning that Kaiser would not give them the same wage increases and benefits they currently enjoyed if they chose the rival union.”
San Jose Mercury News: Hearing officer recommends Kaiser vote be overturned
“Administrative Law Judge Lana Parke concluded that Kaiser’s decision to deny April 2010 pay raises to some NUHW-represented employees in Southern California, and SEIU’s warning to Northern California employees that their pay raises could similarly be in jeopardy if they switched to NUHW, provided the grounds to recommend a new election. Another judge ruled that Kaiser illegally withheld the Southern California pay raises. When SEIU argued that Kaiser may withhold raises if other workers switch to NUHW, that “tended to stoke unwarranted and coercive voter fears” that interfered with a free election, Parke concluded.”
In These Times: Kaiser election results KOed: Judge orders rematch between SEIU and NUHW
“In a strongly-worded 34-page rebuke, federal Administrative Law Judge Lana H. Parke ruled that collusion between Kaiser and its largest union so ‘interfered with employees’ exercise of a free and reasoned choice’ that a new election must be held. In particular, Parke cited the impact of management in unfair labor practices in several smaller Kaiser bargaining units where workers voted to leave SEIU and join NUHW prior to the September-October 2010 election in a statewide unit of service and technical employees.”
Democracy Now: NLRB orders new election after ruling SEIU, Kaiser colluded to influence union vote
“This is a huge defeat for SEIU. And for those who believe in rank-and-file democracy and more involvement by workers in their union decision making, this is a huge step forward.”
Beyond Chron: NLRB Judge throws out Kaiser elections
“Underscoring the significance of her ruling, Judge Parke explained, ‘The Board does not lightly set aside representational elections…There is a strong presumption that ballots cast under specific NLRB procedural safeguards reflect the true desires of the employees.’ She then ordered a new election so that workers will have ‘the right to cast their ballots as they see fit…in the exercise of this right free from interference…’”