Monday, July 28, 2014

Next Up at SEIU Local 99? Scott Washburn

SEIU's Scott Washburn
On her way out the back door, Courtni Pugh -- the recently departed Executive Director of SEIU Local 99 -- announced that Scott Washburn would be taking over as the union’s "Interim Executive Director."

So who’s Washburn and what's his track record?

Washburn is a longtime SEIU staffer who in 2006 was appointed as the "Arizona State Director" of SEIU Local 5 and was tasked with boosting SEIU’s membership in the Grand Canyon State. 

Early in 2012, Purple Palace officials created Local 5 out of a top-down merger of three separate SEIU local unions in Texas, Arizona and Virginia. (WTF?)

So, how did Washburn perform in Arizona?

Not so well.

From 2008 until the end of 2012, Local 5's tri-state membership plummeted from 4,069 to 1,010 members. Ouch!

And in Arizona, Washburn did even worse.

For example, in 2011, more than 700 city employees in Tempe, Arizona decertified SEIU Local 5 to join an independent union called the United Arizona Employee Association.

By 2012, things had gotten so bad that the Purple Palace pulled the plug on the multi-state merger by splitting Local 5 back into its three original local unions (Local 5 in Texas, Local 512 in Virginia, and Local 48 in Arizona).
In Arizona, Washburn performed like a...

Washburn’s "growth strategies" had left SEIU with just 425 members in Arizona, according to records from the U.S. Department of Labor.

So what happened to Washburn?

In typical fashion, he pulled the purple ripcord and landed a comfortable job on SEIU International’s payroll pocketing than $150,000 per year.

And there's more.

In addition to Washburn’s underwhelming track record, Scott has also cultivated many enemies by helping Andy Stern and Dave Regan carry out SEIU’s heavy-handed raids against rank-and-file workers.

In 2009, Washburn famously deployed himself and many of his Arizona staff to California to impose SEIU’s trusteeship on healthcare workers inside SEIU-UHW. 

Later that year, Washburn directed Local 5’s staff to conduct an unsuccessful raid against UNITE HERE at Phoenix’s Sheraton Convention Center Hotel. That won't win Washburn any friends at UNITE HERE Local 11 in Los Angeles.

In 2010, Washburn and his staff spent many more months in California working on SEIU’s law-breaking Kaiser campaign, where SEIU’s illegal threats ultimately overturned the election results.

Meanwhile, Washburn has carefully used Andy Stern's trusteeship as an opportunity to secure full employment for his children. Last year, no fewer than three of Washburn’s kids were employed by SEIU-UHW’s Dave Regan, including Simon Washburn, Ira Washburn and Hannah Washburn.

Hey Local 99 members -- looks like you got a real winner on your hands!