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SEIU Local Union UHW-W Refuses to Take Action With Other SEIU Local Unions Against CNA
Date:4/11/2008

As CNA Escalates Union-Busting Raids on SEIU Members...

LOS ANGELES, April 11 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- As the California Nurses Association escalates shameful and recently violent efforts to raid nurse members from SEIU (http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2008/04/battle-of-the-n.html), SEIU local union United Healthcare Workers-West (UHW-W) still refuses to join other SEIU local unions in taking action to stop the CNA's union-busting tactics. UHW-W is refusing to act while circulating carefully worded flyers designed to give the impression that UHW-W is distancing itself from CNA.

"Actions speak louder than words when it comes to making a stand against the shameful union-busting of the CNA," said Sue Weinstein, RN, Executive Director of SEIU Local 121RN. "It is time for UHW-W to publicly and unconditionally condemn the CNA and join the rest of SEIU healthcare workers in our effort to put an end once and for all to the CNA's tactics. UHW-W's refusal to participate in our efforts to stop CNA union-busting undermines the efforts of SEIU healthcare workers to build a stronger union."

UHW-W continues to refuse to take concrete actions in solidarity with other SEIU local unions against CNA's union-busting:

-- This week SEIU local unions suspended per capita payments[1] to AFL-CIO Central Labor Councils (CLCs) to protest the raids of AFL-CIO affiliate CNA on SEIU until the AFL-CIO takes action to stop the CNA's shameful actions. UHW-W was the only SEIU local union to refuse to put their money where their mouth is and continues to make payments to the CLCs.

-- UHW-W is refusing to contribute organizers and money to the united effort of other SEIU healthcare local unions to reach out to CNA members and ask them to tell their leadership to stop raiding SEIU and other unions.

-- Instead of sending members and staff to a Los Angeles meeting this week of SEIU healthcare members and organizers from other healthcare local unions to discuss concerns about the CNA union-busting tactics, UHW staff and leader Jorge Rodriguez disrupted the meeting unannounced, handing out leaflets, and chanting.

-- UHW-W recently circulated a flyer about their history with the CNA, saying the "resources and power of 'our union SEIU' will be focused on trying to counter attacks in SEIU RN locals," but the flyer has no mention of any concrete action that UHW itself will take to assist the efforts of their brothers and sisters in SEIU.

Background on CNA and UHW-W:

-- This week CNA initiated a raid against SEIU Local 721, the union of hospital employees who work for Los Angeles County. The President of Local 721, Annelle Grajeda, was voted President of SEIU California State Council in December, replacing UHW-W President Sal Rosselli.

-- UHW-W's flyer says they "deplore" CNA's activity in two specific instances - Ohio and Nevada. The flyer fails to mention the raids begun this week on SEIU nurses throughout California, who are members of SEIU Locals 721, 1021, 521, and 121RN.

-- UHW leaders continue to meet and participate with CNA Executive Director Rose Ann DeMoro in public appearances, such as this weekend's Labor Notes conference http://www.labornotes.org/conference/program in Michigan.

-- The San Francisco Business Times on April 7 reported that "Rose Ann DeMoro, longtime executive director of SEIU rival CNA, picked sides in the SEIU conflict [with UHW-W]." While denying that she conspired with Rosselli to merge their unions, DeMoro criticized SEIU, echoing arguments made by UHW-W, "It is not surprising, that (SEIU President Andy Stern) views a worker-controlled SEIU local union as inconsistent with his objective of absolute and complete consolidated power."

-- In March, UHW President Sal Rosselli and his lieutenant John Borsos were in San Diego with CNA President Rose Ann DeMoro at an Executive Council meeting of the AFL-CIO. When Rosselli, Borsos and DeMoro were meeting, CNA had organizers in Nevada raiding SEIU, attempting to convince nurses to leave SEIU.

-- Just days after the San Diego meetings with Rosselli, DeMoro sent CNA organizers to Ohio where non-union workers were about to vote to join SEIU. The CNA's materials in Ohio referred people to a website (http://www.reformseiu.org/) co-sponsored by leaders of UHW that has anti-SEIU propaganda. The result of the CNA interference in Ohio (http://www.shameoncna.org/) was that the union vote had to be called off and more than 8,000 Ohio healthcare workers were denied a voice at work and a chance to improve their lives.

-- In a January letter to the New York State Public Employees Federation, DeMoro repeated the false and misleading claims by UHW-W that SEIU made a "secret" deal with Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger around California health care reform legislation.

For more information visit http://www.ShameonCNA.org and http://www.SEIUFactchecker.org.

[1] Per Capita payments go to fund the general expenses and administration of the CLCs. The SEIU local unions who suspended per capita payments to CLCs continue to contribute funds to the united political action work of CLCs in order to ensure the success of ongoing work to elect a pro-worker Congress and President in 2008.

CONTACT: Andrew McDonald, 202-730-7338, Andrew.mcdonald@seiu.org


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SOURCE Service Employees International Union
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