Massachusetts health center workers vote to unionize

Workers at Whittier Street Health Center in Roxbury, Mass., voted to join 1199 Service Employees International Union United Healthcare Workers East on June 20, according to a statement from Tim Foley, the union's executive vice president.

The vote covers physicians, nurses, social workers, behavioral health specialists and other staff. It comes after the health center reinstated 20 employees who were laid off earlier this month.

The union claimed the layoffs were in retaliation for workers' support of organizing efforts, while health center officials attributed the layoffs to not receiving two major grants totaling more than $600,000.

On June 18, Frederica Williams, the health center's CEO, revealed the 20 laid-off employees would be reinstated due to "a pathway forward that will put Whittier on a stable financial footing for now."


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