Kaiser Permanente union workers to rally across California

Healthcare workers will rally through June 12 at 33 California hospitals owned by Kaiser Permanente in support of issues they care about, the union representing them announced.

The Service Employees International Union-United Healthcare Workers West claims the Oakland, Calif.-based healthcare giant sits on $31.5 billion in reserves and pays 36 of its executives more than a $1 million annually but wants to outsource union jobs.  

"Although Kaiser Permanente is a nonprofit hospital system, too often it acts like a for-profit corporation that leaves behind the values, community relationships and connection to patients and healthcare workers that made it a success," said Verna Hampton, an employee at Kaiser West Los Angeles.

John Nelson, Kaiser Permanente's vice president of communications, told The Sacramento Bee that Kaiser Permanente puts revenue toward providing high-quality, affordable healthcare and to improving the health of people and their communities, not to see financial gains or pay shareholders.

"Kaiser Permanente, like other health plans, maintains financial reserves to cover our obligations if something unexpected were to occur or if regular business was interrupted," Mr. Nelson said. "Our reserves also support our hospitals, medical offices, employee benefits (including pensions), and other elements of our integrated model of care that other health plans do not have."

SEIU-UHW represents more than 55,000 Kaiser Permanente employees in California. Their most recent contract expires Sept. 30.


More articles about human capital and risk:

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UC Davis Health residents, fellows can have union representation, state labor board says



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