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Graduates of Unique New Labor/Management Healthcare Workforce Training Program Honored Today in Oakland
Date:10/19/2007

OAKLAND, Calif., Oct. 19 /PRNewswire/ -- Northern California healthcare workers who have advanced their careers through a union-negotiated, employer-funded education and training program will be honored Friday at a graduation celebration of the SEIU UHW-West & Joint Employer Education Fund.

The workers, 2006-2007 graduates of the fund's programs, are employees of hospitals that participate in the statewide education and training fund, including Kaiser Northern California and Catholic Healthcare West. Founded in 2004 and the first of its kind on the West Coast, the fund is the result of an historic union and healthcare employers partnership aimed at ensuring a future hospital workforce that is highly skilled and provides the highest quality of patient care.

"We are extremely proud of these graduates in particular and the Joint Employer Education Fund in general," said Sal Rosselli, president of SEIU United Healthcare Workers West and a guest speaker at Friday's event. "These workers haven't just moved up the career ladder and improved their lives -- the healthcare workforce and ultimately, patient care has been improved. It's an example of what can be accomplished when the employer and the union work together towards a common goal."

In addition to Rosselli, scheduled guest speakers include: State Senate candidate and former Assemblywoman Wilma Chan of Oakland, and Cheri Kunold, director of Diversity and Lifelong Learning, Catholic Healthcare West. Also speaking will be graduates from the East Bay and Central Valley, who have advanced into higher-paying Registered Nurse and Radiologic Technicians positions through the fund's stipend and upgrade programs.

The graduates are among some 3,400 Service Employees International Union (SEIU) members the Ed Fund has served since 2005. "These graduates have studied long and hard to attain success and rise up the career ladder in their fields," said Joan Braconi, executive director of the Education
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SOURCE SEIU UHW-West & Joint Employer Education Fund
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