Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Kaiser and SEIU on Trial

Last week, an Administrative Law Judge in Cali started hearing testimony from Kaiser workers about 30 separate violations of federal labor law that SEIU and Kaiser are charged with committing during last year's NLRB election for 43,000 Kaiser workers. Tasty hears that the judge, who has the power to overturn the election results and to order a new election, heard some explosive testimony. Here is one highlight:

On Wednesday a Kaiser worker described how Kaiser officials let SEIU hold pro-SEIU campaign meetings in Kaiser's own conference rooms, even as Kaiser officials surveilled and threatened NUHW supporters. SEIU attorney Bruce Harland (pictured) aggressively attacked the testimony, claiming the SEIU was just holding a regular membership meeting in the Kaiser conference room. So the next day, a worker came forward and played a home-made video that she took inside the same meeting. Check it out. Does this look like your typical union meeting?

Pay special attention to how quickly Kaiser security guards show up and try to eject the dues-paying SEIU member. Although its not caught on tape, workers testified that Kaiser managers showed up immediately after the security guards, lecturing the amateur videographer, then let SEIU continue using Kaiser's conference room for campaigning.

As the judge viewed the video, SEIU attorney was seen gritting his teeth as his credibility dropped through the floor.

Tasty hears that SEIU has no less than 4 Attorneys at the hearing (excellent use of your dues!) while Kaiser has hired multiple lawyers from Nixon Peabody, a union busting firm with offices in Shanghai, London and Paris.

Next up? The hearing is on hold this week and relocates to LA on March 1st so workers from Southern California can offer their testimony to the judge. Stay tuned!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

SEIU Problems in the Valley

Seems the SEIU members in Arvin, CA are not impressed with their SEIU representative, Delia Serrano(far right) and have petitioned to have her removed.

"Her actions...were disgraceful and intolerable." Ouch!

Good for the 521 members~ keep SEIU accountable to your demands!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Sophia Sims Sues UHW!

As readers know, Sophia Sims is running for the position of President against Dave Regan in UHW's first post-trusteeship leadership elections.

Sophia has alleged that Dave and Co. (aka the MUST slate) used UHW resources inappropriately for their election campaign. (Tasty LOVES the name of their slate. MUST. Like, you MUST have us as your leaders, UHW. 'Cuz Mary Kay Henry and Andy Stern said you MUST.) Sims' allegations were denied by the "impartial" SEIU election officer assigned by Mary Kay.
But, according to the "Path to Perfection" website, Sophia's slate doesn't buy it, and neither does Tasty. So Sophia is suing UHW! Check out the filing with the State of California and stay tuned.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

SEIU's Bad Reputation

SEIU's multiple scandals and its thuggish efforts to quash internal dissent have caused a real plunge in its reputation. Check out this excerpt from a recent op-ed in the Los Angeles Times about the reasons behind the declining power of the labor movement:

"A split between the Service Employees International Union and the AFL-CIO, the SEIU's local corruption scandals, along with its veritable War of the Roses against other L.A. unions — all have distracted the movement's focus and sapped its resources. This has made L.A.'s once-invincible public sector union movement look like a paper tiger, one that is powerful only during flush economic times."

Tasty figures it can't help too much that SEIU Local 721, the largest public-sector union in Los Angeles, is now in the grips of a palace coup waged by Raahi Reddy's faction against John Tanner. What next??

Monday, February 7, 2011

721's Coup: Someone was at the Reddy!

...more on the drama at SEIU 721.

Raahi Reddy, the former Chief of Staff at 721 (and Organizing Director at the legacy local 715), called certain Executive Board members and Senior Staff into a room at the local and planned the coup that left her with Tanner's job of Executive Director--only hours before it all went down.

Reddy was either sure that Tanner did something very wrong, or this was a very hostile power grab--because apparently, Tanner had no idea it was coming. He went to work like on any other day and was met by union officials who let him collect some personal belongings, took his keys, and then escorted him off the property. Seems a bit different than, "The board has decided not to renew your contract..."

This seems like a questionable move by the 721 leaders, since Raahi organized exactly 0 members in the years that she was running the organizing program at 715. Another great leader! Congrats 721 members!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Another IEB Member Bites the Dust

Looks like another member of SEIU's International Executive Board has gotten the axe. This time it's John Tanner, the Executive Director of SEIU Local 721 in California.

Tanner replaced Annelle Grajeda atop Local 721 after she bit the dust in multiple corruption scandals, including the one where she was named a "co-schemer" in the embezzlement scandal that landed Alejandro Stephens in jail.

Well, according to the memo below, Local 721's Executive Board recently voted to terminate Tanner's contract and placed him on "administrative leave"... kinda like when Scott Courtney placed Stephen Lerner on administrative leave for "insubordination." (Wonder how much Stephen and John get paid while sitting at home or going to the movies??). Check out the "all staff" memo below:

From: Christina Rodriguez

Sent: Monday, January 31, 2011 4:27 PM
To: 721AllStaff
Cc: Linda Dent; Bob Schoonover
Subject: Important Message for All Staff
From the desk of Bob Schoonover & Linda Dent

Dear Staff,

This is to recap this afternoon's staff meeting. Linda and I informed John Tanner that the Board voted not to extend his contract and that he will be placed on administrative leave until the next Executive Board meeting on Wednesday, February 9.

We wish John well as he embarks on a new chapter in his life and will work closely with staff to ensure campaigns and our important work continue to move forward.

In the interim I will convene the senior staff and work closely with each member of the team. While I know this may raise some questions, we are fully committed to our campaigns already underway and will fill key positions as soon as possible.

I appreciate every staff member’s hard work and personally commit to a smooth and positive transition. We have so much important work ahead of us: elected committed local leaders who will support our members’ retirement and fight privatization of services, organizing new members into our union and helping pass a state budget that gets California moving forward again.

Please feel free to talk to me or your supervisor about any questions you have.

In solidarity,

Bob Schoonover

Linda Dent