Group cites Chicago health care chain among nation's worst violators of union rights
CHICAGO, Sept. 19 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- In some parts of the world, workers still face violence and repression when they try to exercise their right to form a union. But even here in the land of the free, anti-union employers intimidate and even fire workers just for trying to organize. Those are among the findings of a newly released annual survey by a respected international watchdog group --- and among America's worst anti-union employers, it singles out Resurrection Health Care, an eight-hospital chain based in the greater Chicago area.
Released by the Brussels-based International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC), the 2007 Survey of Violations of Trade Unions Rights includes Resurrection Health Care among the worst violators of union rights in the United States.
"In the United States there were several cases of anti-union propaganda and dismissals during the year, in the country where union busting has developed into a lucrative business," the report states, naming Resurrection Health Care as one of eight American companies that routinely violated workers' rights in 2006.
ITUC cites two separate incidents in which RHC supervisors prohibited employees from circulating pro-union literature to their colleagues during break times and in non-work areas.
Those incidents led to complaints against RHC by the National Labor Relations Board, which required the hospital chain to post notices to inform employees that "management will not keep [employees] from distributing union literature on non-work times in non-work areas."
"Resurrection's anti-union campaign has been so aggressive that it is now getting international notoriety," said Roberta Lynch, Deputy Director of AFSCME Council 31, which is working with employees at Resurrection hospitals who are seeking to form a union. "We hope attention will prompt a change in the behavior of the system's management."
The ITUC is the world's largest trade union federation, representing 166 million workers through its 309 affiliated organizations within 156 countries and territories.
Resurrection employees have been working to form a union with AFSCME Council. For more information, visit http://www.reformresurrection.org.
To view the complete ITUC survey, visit http://survey07.ituc-csi.org/.
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