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UHW Statement on Ray Marshall Trusteeship Recommendations
Date:1/22/2009

OAKLAND, Calif., Jan. 22 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The following is a statement from United Healthcare Workers (UHW):

"The bottom line is that SEIU Trusteeship Hearing Officer Ray Marshall ruled against a trusteeship. This is the first time since the founding of the Service Employees International Union in 1921 that a hearing officer has denied the International President the right to take over a local union. Even with SEIU's biased rules, in a kangaroo court, Marshall ruled against trusteeship.

Exceeding his authority, however, Marshall calls on UHW to transfer 65,000 nursing home and homecare workers to a new, undemocratic amalgamation of local unions to be led by an undesignated appointee of Andy Stern, or face trusteeship in five days. This conclusion only adds absurdity to what was already a farce. The trusteeship hearing was about the finances of a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization--not a forced merger. The transfer issue was never before Secretary Marshall.

In so making that recommendation, however, Secretary Marshall allows SEIU President Andy Stern to hold his decision over the head of local union members to enforce their compliance with an international executive board decision around long-term care that was not the subject of the trusteeship hearing. The SEIU International Executive Board (IEB) decision referred to in the Marshall report--which would divide UHW nursing home and homecare workers from acute-care hospital workers--had not even been made until after the record in the trusteeship hearing had closed.

This decision is not based on law, or even on the issue that was before the hearing officer, but rather is a political decision designed for political expediency. Marshall grossly exceeded his authority.

By structuring the decision in the way that he does, Marshall appears to allow his report to become a bludgeon to force UHW members into accepting a wrong-headed, undemocratic decision by Andy Stern and the IEB to divide rather than unite California's healthcare workers. In the last twelve months, UHW members have demonstrated multiple times through secret ballot elections, petitions and other democratic expressions their desire to stay united as one healthcare workers' union.

The decision reaffirms that in SEIU, 'justice' means injustice for all those who disagree with Stern and his cronies."

With more than 150,000 members, SEIU United Healthcare Workers-West is the fastest-growing healthcare union in the United States. We represent healthcare workers in all job classifications and all healthcare settings, including hospitals, homecare, nursing homes and clinics. Our mission is to achieve high-quality healthcare for all.

    CONTACT: Sadie Crabtree
    323-365-2083


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SOURCE SEIU United Healthcare Workers-West
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