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SEIU-UHW Members at 26 Hospitals and Nursing Homes Seeking Elections Against Group Started by the Union's Ousted Leaders
Date:1/8/2010

4,000 Healthcare Workers Seek Vote to Join More Than 55,000 Others Who Have Already chosen to Stay United in SEIU

OAKLAND, Calif., Jan. 8 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Healthcare workers at 26 California hospitals and nursing homes are seeking elections to join more than 55,000 other union members who have already chosen to stay united in the Service Employees International Union - United Healthcare Workers West (SEIU-UHW), rather than switch to an organization formed by the union's ousted leaders.

The SEIU-UHW members are asking the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) to schedule the elections as soon as possible so they can continue to improve their jobs and patient care without the distraction of another organization in their facilities.

During the past year, petitions seeking decertification of SEIU-UHW as the workers' union were filed with the NLRB by the National Union of Healthcare Workers (NUHW), an organization formed by the union's former officials who were ousted in January 2009. SEIU-UHW members filed Unfair Labor Practice charges with the NLRB that blocked the elections, citing employer abuses and NUHW misconduct that seriously jeopardized workers' rights.

In many places, members have negotiated strong new contracts that lock in raises and benefits for up to three years - improvements that would be put directly at risk if workers were to leave SEIU. In others, NUHW is creating division as contracts are being bargained - a situation that management is trying to take advantage of. Members have decided the time has come to get NUHW out of their affairs and end the division.

"NUHW did nothing but help management as we fought to win strong new contract protections," said Tami Garver, an environmental services worker at O'Connor Hospital in San Jose. "We've spent the last year cleaning up the confusion and mess left by the leadership that was thrown out and now we ju
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