Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Agenda for Tomorrow's Meeting of the Steering Committee for Kaiser's 'Partnership Unions'

A source forwarded a copy of the agenda for tomorrow’s meeting of the Steering Committee of the Coalition of Kaiser Permanente Unions, which will be held at the Marriott Hotel in San Jose, California.

Check it out… especially if you’ve ever had concerns that John August, Dave Regan and the other illustrious members of the “Steering Committee” are a bit too deeply embedded in Kaiser’s pocket.

Here’s what the agenda says (see full agenda below).

From 11:00am to 12 noon, John August and a business school prof from MIT will lead a discussion about “Kaiser Permanente’s Financial Challenges.”   

Are you kidding?  Financial challenges? Just ten days ago, Kaiser announced that it made $2.6 billion in profits last year -- that’s 30% more profits than in 2011. And Kaiser has pocketed a total of $8.7 billion in profits since 2009. Do those sound like “financial challenges” to you? Kaiser’s only challenge may be finding a bank vault that’s big enough to hold its bags of gold.

At 9:45am, the Steering Committee will discuss “Updates on KP’s actions on cost cutting, position elimination and related issues.” 

What does this mean? Well, “position elimination” refers to the 1,000 layoffs that SEIU-UHW accepted across California. Hmm… sounds like more workers’ jobs may be on the chopping block.

What about “updates” on “KP’s cost cutting?” 

According to Tasty’s sources, this refers to SEIU’s not-so-secret deal with Kaiser to slash workers’ health benefits and eliminate their defined-benefit pension plan. Dave Regan has already implemented these precise cuts on 20,000 of SEIU-UHW’s members at Catholic Healthcare West/Dignity Health and the Daughters of Charity Health System. Now, Kaiser’s execs are anxiously awaiting their chance to “cut costs.” That’s why Kaiser is working so hard to help SEIU-UHW try to win the upcoming NLRB election at Kaiser.

In the afternoon, the Steering Committee will discuss “Total Health.” That’s Kaiser’s and SEIU’s codeword for the Corporate Wellness Program that they recently implemented for Coalition members at Kaiser.  Under this program, Kaiser will collect “bio-metric data” from each and every worker, including workers’ body mass index, blood pressure, cholesterol levels and smoking rates. And Kaiser will link workers’ future compensation to improvements they make on their bio-metric performance… with the aim of saving Kaiser money on employees’ health insurance costs.

Quite a revealing agenda, right? And it makes it crystal clear which way the “Steering Committee” is headed... which is wherever Kaiser tells them to go.

PS. Check out this interesting workers’guide to corporate wellness programs, which sheds light on the coercive programs that SEIU and various companies are pushing on workers across the US.