SANTA ANA, Calif., Sept. 26 SEIU United HealthcareWorkers-West and SEIU Local 121RN have filed for injunctive relief seeking tostop Tenet Healthcare Corp. from cutting health benefits for nearly 7,000California hospital employees, including registered nurses, pharmacists,licensed vocational nurses, respiratory care practitioners, radiologytechnicians, surgical technicians, and certified nursing assistants.
Workers represented by the two unions have been in negotiations with TenetHealthcare for nearly a year. In June, Tenet and the workers reached anagreement on maintaining all health benefits and costs. Last week, however,Tenet changed their position and announced that they plan to cut benefitsbeginning in November, during the open enrollment period with PacifiCare,which administers the corporation's health plan.
"Other hospital chains have worked collaboratively with healthcare workerson ensuring those who dedicate their lives to providing healthcare don't losetheir own healthcare," said Sina Howe, an LVN at Garden Grove Hospital. "Weare dedicated to delivering quality care, and that's why we are fighting for acontract that puts patients first."
The unions have filed Unfair Labor Practice charges with the NationalLabor Relations Board against 14 California hospitals and Tenet HealthcareCorp. for failure to bargain over changes to the health plan. Hospitalsaffected include:
"This is the ultimate measure of disrespect that Tenet has shown itsdedicated employees," said Ranell Ross, Doctors Hospital of Manteca. "DespiteTenet's multiple problems and failures in turning around this troubledcorporation, their employees have been there each and every day delivering thebest care possible under severe circumstances. Cutting back on employees'healthcare is about as low as this corporation can go."
SEIU United Healthcare Workers-West and SEIU Local 121RN represent morethan 152,000 healthcare workers in California. Together both locals representevery type of healthcare worker including nursing, professional, technical andservice classifications, with mission to achieve high quality healthcare forall.
CONTACT: Tadzio Garcia (213) 300-8974Desert Regional Medical Center, John F. Kennedy Palm Springs Memorial Hospital, Indio Doctors Hospital of Manteca Lakewood Regional Medical Center Doctors Medical Center of Modesto Los Alamitos Medical Center Encino-Tarzana Regional Medical San Ramon Regional Center, Encino Campus Medical Center Encino-Tarzana Regional Medical Sierra Vista Regional Center, Tarzana Campus Medical Center, San Luis Obispo Garden Grove Hospital and Medical Twin Cities Community Center Hospital, Templeton Irvine Regional Hospital and Medical USC University Hospital, Center Los Angeles
SOURCE SEIU United Healthcare Workers-West; SEIU Local 121RN