Beginning September 21st at 6am, about 2,500 Kaiser Permanente employees throughout Southern CA were out on the picket line to protest Kaiser’s unfair labor practices and refusal to bargain in good faith toward a fair contract that protects patient care and leaves workers’ benefits intact.

Today, September 22 they are joined by approximately 1,500 NUHW members in Northern California as well as 17,000 Registered Nurses in the California Nurses Association and 2,000 Stationary Engineers who are striking in sympathy with NUHW in the biggest walk-out in Kaiser’s history.

Despite enjoying record profits over the last two and a half years of over $5.7 billion, Kaiser administrators refuse to address workers’ concerns about chronic short staffing and its negative impacts on patient care, and continue to insist on implementing major reductions to workers’ healthcare coverage and retirement benefits.

See this video of Kaiser mental health clinicians describing how chronic short-staffing at Kaiser adversely impacts patient care: http://kaiserunited.org/2011/09/kaiser-mental-health-workers-speak-out/

 

At Kaiser’s flagship Southern California hospital, Kaiser Los Angeles Medical Center (LAMC), more than 1,100 NUHW-represented Registered Nurses will walk off the job for three days beginning this morning.

 

Throughout the Southern California region, over 1,300 Social Workers, Therapists, Health Educators, Dietitians, Speech Pathologists and Audiologists will engage in a two-day strike on September 21st and 22nd, also beginning at 6am today.

    • Amazing first day of our statewide strike at Kaiser. See KaiserUnited.org for wall-to-wall coverage like this: http://t.co/WMy1pjmr about 17 hours ago from web
    • Strike countdown: 24 hours! 01:00:14 AM September 21, 2011 from HootSuite
    • Napa Valley Register covers this week’s Kaiser strike. http://t.co/KUwCBChN 06:46:10 PM September 20, 2011 from web
    • Strike coverage from the Fresno Bee. http://t.co/e7kRd60e 06:45:25 PM September 20, 2011 from web
    • Video: Kaiser mental health providers explain how chronic short staffing to save Kaiser money means diminished care. http://t.co/vAA5HTIg 05:14:13 PM September 20, 2011 from web
    • Grocery stores reach tentative deal with UFCW workers - What’s holding you back, Kaiser Permanente? http://t.co/m4uVBRq7 07:34:43 PM September 19, 2011 from web
    • L.A. County Democratic Party passes resolution supporting striking Kaiser caregivers this week: http://t.co/beWKjVZa 05:54:34 PM September 19, 2011 from web
    • @ericgarcetti Don’t forget 23,000 Kaiser Permanente workers striking statewide this week! 04:12:28 PM September 19, 2011 from webin reply to ericgarcetti
    • Talking Union covers next week’s statewide strike at Kaiser Permanente by NUHW and CNA: http://t.co/ONuHTYNW 09:47:45 PM September 17, 2011 from web
    • The Sonoma County Democratic Party resolves to support Kaiser caregivers on the picket line. http://t.co/tAgFIenN 09:51:47 PM September 16, 2011 from web

Finally, from http://michaelmoore.com/words/mike-friends-blog/what-do-kaiser-permanente-and-verizon-have-in-common read an important article on solidarity with workers are Verizon by health care workers all over the nation.  Add to this the hundreds if not thousands of people who have occupied bankster real estate at Wall Street.  The struggle is all related for it is truly a ‘class struggle’ against the ruling elite in this country that cries “class warfare as they wage it daily against workers.

August 19th, 2011 8:31 PM

 

What Do Kaiser Permanente and Verizon Have In Common?

 

By Lisa Engles

 

It’s so inspiring to see tens of thousands of Verizon workers on the East Coast fighting for their rights and their future.  I know exactly how they feel.  Verizon, sadly, isn’t the only huge, brand name corporation that’s trying to cut workers’ healthcare benefits at a time of record profits. One other company acting like Verizon is none other than a non-profit healthcare provider — my employer, Kaiser Permanente.

As a healthcare worker, I never imagined I might not be able to go to the doctor myself. I never believed I might not be able to afford a surgery or be afforded the care I give to patients every day. I have dedicated my life to helping people receive the care they deserve. After all, I work for one of the largest, most successful healthcare organizations in existence!

But here’s the side of Kaiser Permanente you don’t hear about from their glowing reports: Kaiser executives are currently trying to strip the workers of our future by cutting our health coverage and reducing our retirement benefits. Their idea of “cutting the fat” means cutting out the people who care directly for patients. Short staffing is now the norm, instead of the exception. Short staffing means our patients don’t get the care they deserve.

The thing is, like Verizon, Kaiser is profitable. Kaiser made over $1.5 billion in profits in the first six months of this year alone. They aren’t hurting in the least.

 

There might be a recession, but it sure isn’t evident from Kaiser’s corporate profits.

And now, Kaiser is raising rates on thousands of California teachers, who are already severely affected by cutbacks and layoffs. These folks, who are responsible for educating our youth, will have an even harder time keeping their jobs while their school districts have their budgets strained even more than they already are to beef up Kaiser’s profits. All because people like George Halvorson are GREEDY and think they are entitled to MORE. More money, more pensions, Better Health Coverage, the list goes on.

Join NUHW’s labor and community allies and tell Kaiser that rate hikes for teachers and cuts for healthcare workers are not okay.

As I said, there may be a recession, but it’s not evident at the top levels of Kaiser. Kaiser’s CEO, George Halvorson, has EIGHT – yes you heard right – eight pensions! His golden years really will be golden. He can rest easy knowing he has the Cadillac of health plans to help keep him healthy while he spends all that money.

Why am I telling you this? It’s simple. We need to stand together. Teachers, Healthcare workers. Verizon workers. All of us. Our greatest strength is our solidarity. When we stand together, we can accomplish great things. I need your help to protect my future, the future of my children and my grandchildren. I need your help to ensure our educators have good, affordable healthcare, so that they will be able to do their jobs to the best of their ability. After all, they have our future – the next generation – in their hands.

Will you help? Tell Kaiser they need to put patients, and those who care for patients, before profits!

Please take action right now and tell Kaiser CEO George Halvorson “Enough is Enough!”