Video: NUHW’s historic Kaiser strike, January 2015

KaiserFebruary 5, 2015

Our Kaiser strike was a great success! We held sixty-five picket lines in thirty-five cities throughout California between January 12 and January 16, 2015, bringing much-needed attention to Kaiser’s profit-first mentality and to the systemic understaffing of Kaiser’s psychiatry department, which has led to hardships and even tragedies for Kaiser patients and their families.

We thank the local and statewide elected leaders who stood with us on the picket line and the members of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) who supported us.  Your willingness to  stand up for Kaiser mental health patients and Kaiser workers is greatly appreciated.

We also thank Operating Engineers Local 39, who went on strike in support of us; the many pharmacists and SEIU and CNA rank-and-file workers who joined our strike; the Teamsters and building trades unions who honored our picket lines throughout the state; and San Francisco Firefighters Local 798, who cooked lunch for hundreds of us on the picket line in Oakland.

And a very special thanks to the scores of Kaiser patients who joined us on the picket lines and courageously came forward to share their experiences with Kaiser’s failing mental health services. Many of you even offered to share your stories with the media — a brave and generous act of advocacy on behalf of Kaiser mental health patients past, present, and future.

The deluge of press coverage of the strike is a testament to the gravity of this issue and its widespread impact. The strike garnered more than one thousand press stories, from small community newspapers and radio and television stations to national and even international media, including National Public Radio, The Nation, Al Jazeera, and the Guardian of London.

For photos of the strike, click here. 

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