Thursday, December 3, 2015

SEIU-UHW Officials Accepted Wage Freeze and Deep Benefit Cuts for 2,000 Workers at Daughters of Charity Health System

Here's the latest on SEIU-UHW's ramrod ratification votes at the Daughters of Charity Health System, where SEIU-UHW officials have once again forced massive wage and benefit cuts down the throats of 2,000 workers employed at four California hospitals.

As expected, a closer reading of the agreement negotiated by SEIU-UHW's Dave Regan has revealed a lengthy list of cuts in addition to Regan's blockbuster concession that strips hundreds of workers of health insurance, sick leave, retirement, and other benefits.

Here's a fuller list of the cuts. Below, Tasty has posted a copy of the full agreement as well as a two-page summary that SEIU-UHW staffers handed out to workers. 
  • Wage scales are frozen. SEIU-UHW members will no longer receive "step increases" according to their years of service on the job.
  • Part-time employees who work between 20-30 hours per week are no longer eligible for any benefits, including health insurance, vacation, holidays, sick pay, retirement, etc.
  • "Education Leave" and "Jury Duty Leave" are eliminated.
  • Retiree Health Benefits are eliminated for workers at St. Louise Regional Hospital and O'Connor Hospital.  In the prior contract ("Article 23: Retirement" on page 112-113), the company was required to pay up to 75% of the cost of monthly health premiums for employees who leave their jobs after attaining age 55 and completing at least 10 years of service.
SEIU-UHW's Dave Regan
  • Short Call Pay is eliminated.
  • "Float Differentials" are eliminated.
  • Paid Time Off (PTO) accruals will be reduced by 16 hours every year of the agreement.
  • "Extended Sick Leave accruals will be reduced by 1/2 of the amount in year 1 and 2 of the agreement."
  • SEIU-UHW accepted a new management rights clause.
  • Contract provisions on Holidays, Call Offs, Daily Cancellation, Seniority, Job Vacancies, PTO, and Union Membership were reduced to the lowest standard across the four SEIU-UHW hospitals, meaning that workers at three of the four hospitals will experience reductions.
Despite these cuts and reports of overwhelming "no" votes at the ramrod ratification votes, SEIU-UHW says its sellout agreement was somehow approved by the membership. As reported earlier, SEIU-UHW's lengthy delay in reporting the outcome of the votes has led to widespread discussion of ballot staffing and vote fraud.

For Dave Regan, however, the sellout contract is a "Victory!" Here's a post from SEIU-UHW's twitter page:

Meanwhile, here's a report from an SEIU-UHW member at one hospital:
I work at O’Connor Hospital and am an SEIU member.  The dealings re. this “tentative agreement” of two weeks ago were so secretive that many of us didn’t even know about the vote until  after it had taken place.    My own shop steward (who was a member of the negotiating team) failed to tell me about the vote, nor the fact that they had agreed to the clause “all past practices will be eliminated with the exception of prior arbitration decisions,” which is a loophole wide enough to drive a truck through.   Apparently that would supersede previous agreements not to outsource work, which would majorly impact my job security due to the nature of my job.  
Apparently the new “buyer” of the hospital, Blue Mountain, has learned from some of the mistakes of their predecessor of last year, Prime Healthcare, and instead of trying to fight the SEIU management they have made some sort of quid pro quo with them, thus the alacrity with which SEIU reps have soiled their credibility for all eternity, caught with both hands in the cookie jar and their pants down simultaneously.
People need to go to jail here.  This is a clear conspiracy to commit major fraud.

And here's a report from a second worker:
It kinda feels like battered wife syndrome here. Some are angry and lots are in some sort of a state of denial. SEIU has announced a "membership" meeting where I guess they will try to convince us what a great deal they got us. It's funny but here SEIU said we neeed these cuts because off the shape the Daughters were in. Forget that the new Boss has a war chest of $20 Billion at hand. The funny part is the Boss has referred to what got taken away as "waste". Our pay is "waste" but the 4 clowns who make up Verity Health have no waste whatsoever in their collective $58 million dollars a year in pay. I wonder what logic SEIU used in previous takeaways from Kaiser and Dignity who both were making record profits at the time of the cuts.