Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Worker's Advice: Keep SEIU-UHW's Stan Lyles out of Your Stockings

As visions of sugar plums dance through the heads of holiday revelers, workers tell Tasty that a very different image is pulsing through the brains of SEIU-UHW's top officials.

This alternative vision also involves stockings... but, um, the kind you'd see in a Victoria's Secret catalog. According to workers, SEIU's end-of-year parties have further stimulated the already hefty hormonal production of SEIU-UHW's president and vice president, Dave Regan and Stan Lyles

Regan's extra-marital escapades with union members and staffers are already well-known. But hey... don't sell Stan short. Lyles appears to be equally hormonally turbo-charged. And he's constantly on the prowl, say workers.

Check out this FaceBook post from a rank-and-file SEIU-UHW member, who offers the following warning about Lyles: "Ladies, watch your panties." (Tasty has blanked out the worker's name to protect her identity. Click on image to enlarge it.)

And that's not all. A former female staffer at SEIU-UHW describes the following frightening scene:  During an SEIU-UHW staff meeting -- where Lyles was supposed to be paying attention to the discussion -- the staffer suddenly felt a buzzing from her cellphone and pulled it out to reveal a text message from Lyles, who was sitting across the room from her: "U look really nice in that blouse. mmm."

This, my friends, is what happens when purple princelings are permitted to prance around the Purple Palace like some sort of imperial occupiers... madly stuffing $300,000-per-year salaries into their pockets, cutting backroom deals with bosses to slash and burn workers' pensions and health benefits, and preying on the very workers whom they're supposed to serve.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Court Document: SEIU's Mary Kay Henry Waged Covert War against California Nurses Association

Debbie Schneider

A source has provided Tasty with an explosive document that details the covert efforts of SEIU President Mary Kay Henry to raid the California Nurses Association (CNA) and launch an illegal operation to interfere with the CNA's internal membership elections.

What's the source? It's a sworn deposition by Debbie Schneider, a top official at SEIU who served as a Deputy Trustee during SEIU's trusteeship of SEIU-UHW. Schneider is also a member of SEIU's International Executive Board and reports directly to Mary Kay Henry.

Here's what happened. (Tasty posted original documents below.)

In 2009, Schneider gave sworn testimony as a result of a lawsuit that the SEIU filed against NUHW's leaders. During questioning by an opposing attorney, Schneider coughed up explosive details and a revealing document.  

What does Schneider say?

SEIU Pres. Mary Kay Henry
A key part of her testimony focuses on two pages of her handwritten notes from a meeting with Mary Kay Henry, Dave Regan and Scott Courtney (SEIU's Organizing Director) that took place on December 23, 2008. As you'll see, SEIU's attorneys whited-out portions of the notes, which are stamped with identifying court numbers at the bottom.

During the meeting, Henry, Regan, Courtney and Schneider discuss SEIU's secret effort to illegally interfere with the CNA's internal membership elections. For example, the SEIU officials describe how they secretly recruited and backed 12 candidates to run for CNA's Executive Board. SEIU even created and funded a dummy non-profit organization called "California Nurses First," with a staff of 30, as a front group to attack the CNA, according to Schneider's notes.

But that's not all. In December of 2008, SEIU's top leaders discuss their intention to use the soon-to-be-trusteed SEIU-UHW as a launching pad for waging decertification raids against the CNA's membership in California. Here's an excerpt from Schneider's notes, which are labeled "CNA Briefing":

Their CHW contract window opens March -- contract ("K") expires end of June. We'll be running decerts -- [CNA members] will be in same hospitals as we, as UHW trustees, are in.

Notably, Henry and Co. are talking about the trusteeship of SEIU-UHW as if it's a 'done deal' even though Ray Marshall, the so-called "independent" hearing officer, hadn't even written his report yet! Here's one excerpt from Schneider's testimony where she’s questioned about this:

Attorney:   "We have candidates running," isn't that SEIU candidates running 12 to 18 regional slots for CNA elected positions?

Schneider:   That's what it looks like.

Attorney:    The next line "February end of May campaign" -- is that "elections"?

Schneider:   It must be between the nominations and the election time.

Attorney:    And the next one there "CHW contract window opens March.  Contract expiration end of June."  What is that referring to?

Schneider:   Their CHW contract window, when it opens and when the contract expires.

Attorney:     If we read this line, it says:  "Same hospitals as we as UHW trustees."  Do you see that?

Schneider:   Yes.

Attorney:     Why are you referring to yourself as an UHW trustee on 12/23/2008?

Schneider:   I don't know.

What else is in the documents? The second page of the notes details SEIU's "three-pronged strategy" to wage war on the CNA. Two of the prongs are: "Expose RoseAnn [DeMoro] and Organization" and "Mount California Offense." Ominously, the third prong has been whited-out by SEIU's attorneys.

In addition to the meeting notes, Schneider gives up more details during her deposition, which was recorded by a court reporter. Below, Tasty has posted two relevant excerpts from the 252-page transcript.

For example, during aggressive questioning by an attorney, Schneider admits that SEIU’s officials tapped Dennis Rivera to recruit Catholic Healthcare West's CEO, Lloyd Dean, to help SEIU in its plot to impose a trusteeship on SEIU-UHW and then raid the CNA. Talk about the boss's union!! For those who don't know him, Dennis Rivera is a "Senior Policy Adviser" for Mary Kay Henry.

SEIU's Dave Regan
Regan, in an apparent payback to his corporate partner, later agreed to eliminate CHW workers' defined-benefit pension plan, thereby giving Dean Lloyd a gift worth hundreds of millions of dollars, according to CHW's own financial records.

Take a look at the documents below for more details. They offer an amazing glimpse at how SEIU has worked hand-in-glove with the bosses to destroy two aggressive unions that fight for workers.

And here are the two excerpts from Debbie Schneider's deposition (no break between the excerpts):

Monday, December 17, 2012

SEIU's Dave Regan Faces Rebellion from Executive Board

SEIU-UHW's Dave Regan

Sources report that SEIU-UHW’s Dave Regan is facing a rebellion from a substantial part of the union’s Executive Board.

Here’s the latest from this fast-moving story:

Last month, SEIU-UHW’s Executive Board formally rejected Regan’s proposed union-wide budget for 2013. The proposed budget details Regan’s spending priorities, along with the salaries and benefits of SEIU-UHW’s staffers, which total approximately $110 million.

Why did the Executive Board members reject the proposed budget? Sources say several issues are at play.

First, many of the Board’s members simply don’t trust Regan. Last year, Regan spent $5 million of workers’ dues money on two harebrained (and totally deceptive) statewide ballot measures that Regan was later forced to abandon… but only after he’d flushed millions of the union’s money down the toilet. This article in the Los Angeles Times offers more coverage of this debacle.

Secondly, Board members are upset at SEIU-UHW’s failure to provide basic representation to the union’s members. At a recent meeting, Board members reportedly stood up and said their co-workers get zero assistance from the union… and can’t even get a phone call returned. This is partly due to the new “culture” that Regan has created inside the union, where staffers have widely adopted and replicated the disrespect and arrogance that Regan shows towards the union’s members.

Thirdly, Board members complained that Regan is negotiating one concessionary contract after the next... which are stripping workers of their hard-earned pensions and health benefits. In fact, by Tasty’s count, Regan has already eliminated the defined-benefit pension plans for more than 20,000 of SEIU-UHW’s members.

Hal Ruddick
In perhaps the most infamous episode, Regan and staffer Hal Ruddick blatantly lied to SEIU-UHW’s 14,000 members at Dignity Health/Catholic Healthcare West in order to get them to switch into a cheap 401(k)-style plan that stripped hundreds of millions of dollars from workers' pockets.  

Sources describe a dramatic exchange at a recent Board meeting. In reference to Regan's concessionary contracts, Board members asked:  Why are Regan and SEIU-UHW’s staffers still getting their defined-benefit pensions and fully employer-paid family health coverage when tens of thousands of the union’s rank-and-file members are losing these precise benefits?

Fair question, right? In fact, Regan has a particularly fat pension plan that will pay him more than $17,000 PER MONTH along with full health benefits, for the rest of his life!

So what was Regan’s response? The middle finger! Regan arrogantly threatened to do an end run around the Executive Board by “bringing the budget to the members for their approval,” say sources.

Can Regan carry out his threat? Only if we wants a constitutional crisis and lawsuits. SEIU-UHW’s constitution clearly gives the budgeting powers to the Board. Specifically, Article XI, Section 2(C) says:  

The Board is responsible to make final decisions in adopting the budget and on other key financial issues.

Meanwhile, as the crisis deepens, the clock is ticking. Only 14 days are left to complete the budget before January 1. Stay tuned!

Friday, December 14, 2012

SEIU-UHW Negotiates Deep Cuts for Thousands of Sutter Health Workers

Tasty hears that Dave Regan is bringing his concessionary caravan to more than a half dozen Sutter Health hospitals that employ thousands of SEIU-UHW’s members. Sutter is the largest hospital chain in Northern California and has pocketed $1.6 billion in profits during the past two years.  

Readers may recall that in August, Regan cut a deal with Sutter’s Alta Bates Summit Medical Center that allowed the hospital to subcontract more than 100 of SEIU-UHW members' jobs -- or nearly 10% of the entire bargaining unit.

So what’s the latest?

Several weeks ago, Regan negotiated a new contract for SEIU-UHW’s members at Sutter Lakeside Hospital. SEIU's new deal slashes workers’ health benefits and imposes a wage freeze during the first year of the contract -- just like the wage freeze that Regan negotiated for 14,000 workers at Dignity Health/Catholic Healthcare West.

Regan also inked new contracts for SEIU-UHW’s members at Sutter’s St. Luke’s Hospital in San Francisco and Sutter Medical Center of Santa Rosa. Under these deals, workers will be forced to pay hundreds of dollars each month for a health insurance plan that’s always been free. Here’s an excerpt from the tentative agreement, signed by SEIU-UHW’s Julie Kwiek, that puts workers on the hook to pay at least 27% of the monthly health premiums by the end of the contract. (Click on image below to enlarge it.)

Oh, and that’s not all.  SEIU-UHW officials agreed to cut workers’ reporting pay in half and to implement a corporate wellness program.

Then, on Wednesday of this week, workers at Sutter Solano Medical Center reported that SEIU-UHW officials negotiated another sell-out contract deal.

Yesterday, SEIU bargained with Sutter Roseville Medical Center and, according to workers, was trying to force huge concessions down the throats of workers. Members of SEIU-UHW’s own bargaining committee began rebelling against their union as reports circulated that Regan had cut a secret back-room deal with the company’s execs to slash their benefits.

More to come!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Secret Email Reveals Scam at SEIU Local 99

Here’s an interesting story that comes courtesy of a tipster.

Several days ago, SEIU Local 99 triumphantly announced the names of the candidates it’s endorsing for upcoming races for the city council, school district and mayor’s office in Los Angeles.

According to a post on the union’s website, Local 99’s endorsement process was a shining example of bottom-up democracy that featured rank-and-file members questioning the candidates in townhall forums and then making the endorsement decisions through democratic votes.

Sounds wonderful, right?

Well… we’ve all learned that things ain’t what they seem to be in Purple Land. And in this case, an internal email describes what actually happened.

It turns out that Local 99’s top officials -- including Executive Director Courtni Pugh -- secretly made the union’s endorsement decisions BEFORE the membership meetings actually took place on December 4, 5 and 6.

An internal email dated November 30 spells out the SEIU officials’ so-called “recommendations” for each endorsement.  

Our recommendations are listed below--PLEASE keep all of these recommendations confidential.
The email even explains why the SEIU officials endorsed David Vela, a candidate for the community college district:

endorsing over incumbent b/c he is a more reliable vote.
The email goes on to instruct Local 99’s staffers to screen the rank-and-file members who are likely to attend the endorsement meetings so they can pack the room full of “solid members who will be… voting these ways on these races.” 

Quite an exercise in democracy, right?