Wednesday, June 6, 2012

SEIU-UHW: More Krookin’ at Kaiser Ratification Votes

Tasty hears that SEIU-UHW officials have pulled another head-spinning scam out of their purple bag of tricks. Here’s what’s happening:

At Kaiser Permanente’s hospitals in California, SEIU-UHW has been holding “ratification votes” on a proposed three-year contract recently negotiated by John August and Dave Regan. Remarkably, workers at more than a dozen facilities have voted down the proposed deal despite the fact that SEIU’s vote is a far cry from democratic and transparent.

Now that the voting is supposed to conclude, it’s clear that SEIU-UHW officials are unhappy with the results. What to do? They’ve simply added more days of voting at multiple facilities in hopes of changing the outcome! 

For example, readers report they’ve extended the voting at Kaiser Baldwin Park Medical Center, Kaiser Modesto Medical Center, Kaiser Walnut Creek Medical Center and others. At some facilities, Regan has reportedly added as many as four additional days of voting.

It’s equivalent to doing the following at a baseball game:  the Purple Team is unhappy with the score after 9 innings. So they change the rules and add 5 more innings in hopes they’ll end up on top by the end of the 14th inning. And if they don’t, Tasty will bet dollars to donuts that they’ll pull another trick from their bag.

So what’s happening as Regan prepares for extra innings?  Readers report that SEIU has assigned more staffers and “Lost-Timers” to patrol the floors of Kaiser’s facilities so they can target workers to vote for SEIU’s deal.

At Kaiser Baldwin Park, workers literally stumbled across “extra-inning” voting in a Kaiser conference room. SEIU-UHW staffers had somehow forgotten to post an announcement about the extra balloting.

Finally, speaking of SEIU’s tentative agreement, a worker sent along interesting information about SEIU’s proposed “Partnership Tax,” which would make SEIU-UHW members pay a 9-cents-an-hour tax for every hour they work. The tax would be on top of workers’ regular union dues. If approved, SEIU-UHW would collect an additional $6 million a year from Kaiser’s 43,000 workers through the Partnership Tax.

So how would this $6 million be spent? According to SEIU-UHW’s summary of the tentative agreement, the tax would pay for things like training Kaiser managers on the union’s contract and “conferences on the Labor Management Partnership.” 

Gimme a break! Kaiser is making $7 billion in profits, but workers gotta pay for the training of Kaiser’s managers and supervisors? And what about these “partnership conferences”?  Do they include junkets like this one at the Renaissance Hollywood Hotel and Spa where SEIU’s hand-picked favorites revel in steam rooms and poolside bars?

Here’s the excerpt from SEIU-UHW’s summary about the Partnership Tax. (Click on image to enlarge)