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CNA/NNOC Criticizes SEIU Trusteeship: Cites Concerns for Erosion of RN and Patient Care Standards
Date:1/28/2009

OAKLAND, Calif., Jan. 28 /PRNewswire/ -- Citing concerns about erosion of RN and patient care standards, the California Nurses Association/National Nurses Organizing Committee today criticized the action by the Service Employees International Union to take over its largest California affiliate, United Healthcare Workers-West.

In a statement today, Rose Ann DeMoro, executive director of CNA/NNOC, which represents registered nurses in most of the hospitals where UHW represents ancillary staff, noted, "the appalling track record of SEIU International in signing substandard agreements with employers in exchange for additional dues payments is a major cause for alarm in a state that has set the national standard in hospital patient care conditions and RN standards."

"What we can expect to see now is open complicity between hospital corporations happy to have in SEIU International a new partner in hospitals across California who has repeatedly demonstrated a brutal indifference to protecting workplace protections for patients or employees," she said.

DeMoro said CNA/NNOC will send an emphatic message to employers across California urging them not to exploit the SEIU-UHW battle to seek to unilaterally roll back conditions or contract standards for CNA/NNOC members, and to state legislators to be wary of SEIU-backed legislation that would harm patients or nurses. SEIU International, for example:

  • Lobbied against reforms to improve patient care conditions and staffing in California nursing homes, and agreed to give management the "exclusive right" to set pay, discipline employees, reassign or eliminate jobs, and outsource work.
  • Agreed not to voluntary report adverse conditions to any regulatory or other oversight agency in a pact with Washington state nursing homes.
  • Opposed RN-to-patient ratios in California, and then sought to undermine the law, and has also worked to undermine RN ratio legislation in other states.
  • Endorsed the closure of public hospitals and nursing homes in New York state in a joint pact with the New York Hospital Association.
  • Opposed public health funding in Cleveland, where SEIU spent hundreds of thousands of dollars to defeat a critical public health services measure after county officials refused to sign a sweetheart agreement to help SEIU gain new members.

Representing 80,000 RNs in 50 states, the California Nurses Association/National Nurses Organizing Committee is the largest and fastest-growing association of direct-care RNs in the nation. Learn more at www.calnurses.org.


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SOURCE California Nurses Association
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