News

SEIU HCMN Statement on Trump’s Executive Order

This Executive Order requires families be indefinitely imprisoned in facilities such as abandoned Walmarts, tent cities, military bases, etc. where children will still be forcibly separated from parents prosecuted as criminals, as mandated by the administration’s zero tolerance policy. The family separations will still happen.

This Executive Order is still a part of the same design to criminalize communities of color and expand the already massive, unaccountable and deadly immigrant detention system. It does absolutely nothing to solve the manufactured humanitarian crisis at the border created by President Trump and his administration.

Meanwhile, over 2,300 children still remain in cages and many still missing. Some of the parents have been deported with no instructions on how to locate their children, and there are no mechanisms established to assist in the reunification of these families.

We are a country of compassion, opportunity and hope. The safety and well-being of children and the soul of America is still at stake. We must keep families together in an environment where children can thrive.

Using the lives of young children as political bargaining chips will never solve this crisis, nor will terrorizing our borderland communities. We demand an end to this cruel practice of criminalizing families and locking them up in jails indefinitely.

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Home Care Workers and Clients Disappointed at Lack of Action on Home Care Crisis During Legislative Session, Vow to Mobilize “Care Voters” in November

Saint Paul, Minn—The 2018 legislative session ended without any new investments in home care work, despite high profile attention to a care crisis that is affecting seniors and people with disabilities across the state. The crisis was front-page news with stories highlighting the fact that there are over 8,000 vacancies in the state’s personal care attendant programs due to low wages and lack of benefits.

While disappointed about the lack of investment in care work, home care workers with SEIU did praise legislators from both parties for standing up to protect their union rights from those who attempted to weaken them this session.

“Minnesotans want a state where our loved ones can get the care they need and deserve in their own homes. Home care workers and our clients came to the Capitol throughout the session to make sure our elected officials understood the crisis facing families in every corner of the state,” said Dawn Burnfin, a mother and home care worker from Chisholm in Northern Minnesota and elected member of the SEIU Healthcare Minnesota executive board. “Make no mistake, inaction means more pain, frustration and heartache for families across Minnesota. This is wrong and we will mobilize home care workers to make sure legislators understand the need for investments in care between now and the November elections.”

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The advocacy by SEIU Healthcare Minnesota members, seniors and people with disabilities generated bi-partisan support to raise wages, with bills being introduced in both the House and Senate. Money for a pay increase was included in Governor Dayton’s proposed budget. Despite broad support for the issue, the pay raises were not included in the final budget bill. This inaction has caused frustration for the thousands of families across the state personally affected by this growing crisis.

“While I’m extremely disappointed we didn’t win steps forward for our families around home care funding, it serves as a reminder about the importance of elections and getting people into office who share our values around the care and dignity of our families,” said Delores Flynn, a Union supporter and mother and caretaker of an adult son who needs 24-hour care to stay in his home. “I’m ready to work as hard as possible to make sure we have people in office who understand the challenges facing families like mine.”

Following session, Delores joined home care workers, clients, faith, labor and community organizations in launching a “Care Voter” effort for the 2018 election. The “Care Voter” initiative will seek to mobilize voters to educate candidates and fellow voters about ways the next legislature can support care givers and the people they care for. The “Care Voter” initiative will be a key part of SEIU’s member electoral program this fall and summer.

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SEIU Albert Lea Members Reach Agreement with Mayo

New contract ratified Monday following agreement reached after 2nd strike had been authorized

Albert Lea, Minn — After a contentious, multi-year fight, members of SEIU Healthcare Minnesota who work at the Albert Lea Mayo Hospital have reached an agreement with Mayo Clinic. The two sides reached a tentative agreement the week of May 7th for both groups of workers (general group and skilled maintenance) that have been without contracts for nearly two years.

rs_Albert_Lea_Mayo_HCMN_strikeAfter giving members time to look over the tentative agreement, a majority of SEIU members voted to approve the plan Monday. The agreement came following members authorizing a second strike in a vote in late April. With a possible second, longer strike looming, the two sides were able to reach an agreement that found both sides compromising at the May bargaining sessions.

Workers expressed pride in standing up for good jobs and quality rural healthcare, even as Mayo dug in on certain policy proposals that the group had hoped to stop.

“Being able to win really good pay raises and making sure our contract does not include a subcontracting clause for skilled maintenance jobs were big wins,” said Nate Johnson, Chief Engineer and 20-year Mayo employee. “We wish we had been able to get them to move on everything we wanted, but I’m incredibly proud that we stood up for what is right and won the positive changes that we did. We hope we showed other workers, both here in Albert Lea and across the state, that there is power in standing up for what is right for working families.”

The groups won pay increases ranging from 7.25% to 10% over the three years of the contract. While Mayo won the right to change four core benefits during the term of the contract, workers won a contract provision that those benefits will be offered to all full-time and part-time (.5 and over) employees during the term of the contract, an important win for members. The contract also included protections and support for workers who may have to transition to Austin, even as the union continues to oppose any reductions in staff or services in Albert Lea. It also preserved holiday pay, which was one of the driving issues behind the Dec. 22nd strike and Christmas lockout.

“We took a stand, against the odds, because we believed that the work we do in our community hospital is important for our families, our neighbors and our communities,” said Sheri Wichmann, who has worked in sterile processing for 18 years. “Going on strike and being locked out showed we firmly believed in our fight for good jobs and good healthcare here in Albert Lea. We remain committed to those values. While you always wish you had been able to win everything you set out for at the start, we are proud we were able to move Mayo on important issues facing our families and community.”

As part of the agreement, both sides agreed to drop NLRB charges against the other.

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SEIU Healthcare Minnesota represents over 35,000 healthcare and long term care workers in hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, and home care across Minnesota.

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JOB POSTING: Internal Organizer-Arbitration Specialist

Internal Organizer: Arbitration Specialist

This posting is for an assignment with a primary focus on Arbitration Execution in the  SEIU HCMN Member Action Center

OVERALL JOB STATEMENT

Internal Organizer at SEIU Healthcare Minnesota carries out a variety of job functions.  An Internal Organizer “IO” will be asked to participate in organizing, legislative and political action, training of members, building worksite leaders, contract negotiations, and other tasks as the need arises.  Any candidate must be willing to work long and irregular hours including weekends and evenings when called for.  The IO must also be willing to travel with some possible overnight stays.

The Union IO shall be required to perform services in accordance with the needs of the Local and at such times and places as are necessary.  The Union IO must have a dedication to improve the position of our members and strengthen the role of our Union in every venture.  There must be a willingness to become educated in health care issues, and a desire to lead and inspire our stewards and rank and file.

JOB RESPONSIBILITIES

  • Prepare and process grievances through Arbitration hearings and write post arbitration briefs.
  • Continuous work on internal organizing within facilities.
  • Identify, recruit, train and develop stewards and work-site leaders; assist in defining steward role; assist in developing plans for work-site campaigns.
  •  Create and implement an onsite visit schedule to be posted on the internal shared calendar
  • Support and develop  member leaders.
  • Ensure positive and early New member experience
  • Develop a program for COPE
  • Support member leaders in processing grievances and carrying out investigations.
  • Create or assist members in creating communication systems; write and edit leaflets, proposals, newsletters, etc.
  • Negotiate contracts and assist other staff in negotiating contracts – from proposals through strike preparation.
  • Train Member Leaders to ensure accordance of collective bargaining agreements at your work-sites by management; meeting timelines and procedures related to labor contracts.
  • Participate in organizing campaigns when requested, lead residual organizing campaigns in existing jurisdictions.
  • Monitor policies in work sites, concerning members, ensuring contract compliance.

MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS REQUIRED

  • High School Diploma or GED, JD or Secondary Education preferred.
  •  2-3 years with successful record in executing Arbitration hearings and preparing post arbitration briefs.
  • Previous work experience in Union setting required.
  •  Ability to communicate well in writing and orally.
  •  Good personal organizational skills; good record keeping.
  •  Must be computer literate; advanced computer skills a plus.
  •  Must have a valid driver’s license and vehicle in good working condition.  Must have proof of auto insurance.

SKILLS NEEDED

  • Knowledge of labor rights and contract language.
  •  Ability to negotiate collective bargaining agreements and develop and execute contract campaign plans.
  •  Ability to gather, analyze and present statistical data.
  •  Ability to establish rapport with members in widely diversified ethnic, social and economic groups.
  •  Ability to mobilize membership around issues.
  •  Ability to maintain a commitment to educating the members on the Union and their contract.

BEHAVIORAL QUALIFICATIONS NEEDED

  • Good judgment and ability to discern priorities when faced with many important tasks.
  •  Ability to handle very negative situations where in fact, you may be the target of the negativity; and turn the situation around to have the best outcome.
  •  Manage conflicting demands.
  •  Maintain rapport and be able to deal with difficult members.
  •  Show extreme amounts of patience.
  •  Reassure members, by your actions, that you are for them and will not take management’s word over theirs or “favor” management.
  •  Work under pressure independently.
  •  Maintain HIGH degree of confidentiality, both for your members and internal Local issues.
  •  Show professional demeanor at work-sites and in the community.
  •  Maintain respectful, professional relationship with Union stewards; monitoring and supporting them in their roles.
  •  History of high level of proven leadership.

 

Candidate will be assigned to meet the needs of SEIU Healthcare and management may alter assignment as those needs change.

Compensation and benefits as set forth in contract with USW Local 7263-21 for “Union Representative and Organizer.”

Qualified Applicants may send resume and cover letter to Rasha Ahmad Sharif:  rasha.ahmadsharif@seiuhcmn.org or fax to 651-294-8200

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St. Marys Hospital Members Ratify New 3-year Contract

180424_SMH_ratification vote passed

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SEIU St. Mary’s Contract Negotiations Summary

  • The duration of the contract is 3 years.
  • We cleaned up contract language to remove food service.
  • Along with Union Stewards, Leaders are also recognized in the contract in all applicable places.
  • Employees will be granted time off to attend Lobby Day.
  • The timeline to decline and awarded position went from 14 days to 7 days.
  • A full list of existing benefits was added to the contract so everyone is aware.
  • The Union Representative must notify the HR representative 48 hours before coming to the hospital whenever possible.
  • The Union Representative will give 2 weeks’ notice, instead of 6 days, to get employees released for union business.
  • The standard initiation fee no longer exists and was removed from the contract.
  • Maintained union pension.
  • Double time will be paid on the 7th day of a work week if an employee is scheduled or mandated during that seven days.
  • New Union Security language was added.
  • There will be new member orientation for new Union members on site the same day as the new employee orientation.
  • All Roman Numerals will be changed to regular numbers.
  • The Employer and Union agree to sit down and discuss overtime issues in Surgical Services.
  • The Employer and Union will create a side agreement regarding i-pad carrying straps for janitors in Environmental Services.
  • 20-year step was added to the wage scale.
  • Wages:
    • Year 1: 1.5% for years 0-9; 1.75% for years 10-19; 2% for 20+ years
    • Year 2: 2%
    • Year 3: 2%

If you have any questions, please ask a member of your elected bargaining team or ask an organizer at the ratification vote. We will be voting on the contract on Tuesday, April 24th from 7am-7pm in Domitilla M-144.

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Statement From Home Care Worker After Minnesota Court of Appeals Rules in Favor of Home Care Workers’ Union

The ruling is the latest in a series of losses for anti-union groups. Workers remain committed to addressing care crisis and improving lives of workers and families across Minnesota

Saint Paul — On Tuesday a three-judge panel of the Minnesota Court of Appeals affirmed the Bureau of Mediation Services (BMS) dismissal of a union-decertification effort by a group calling itself “MNPCA” in December 2016, working in collaboration with the right-wing think tank the Center of the American Experiment. It is the latest in a string of losses for the anti-union organizations fighting to roll back the gains won by unionized home care workers over the last four years. In response to this latest court victory for workers and for the seniors and people with disabilities who receive care and families across Minnesota fighting to address the care crisis in our state, Anoka home care worker and elected union Vice President Corey Van Denburgh released the following statement:

Somali-HomeCareWorkers“Over the last few years we have made some crucial gains for home care workers and the people we serve. It’s a far cry from all the change that’s needed – wages are still far too low and there’s no health insurance for our jobs, for example – but still, we’ve made important progress in the short period of time since we voted to unionize. We’ve won sick pay for the first time, raised the wage floor by $3/hour, won free access to trainings, won over $150,000 in back-pay awards for workers who were underpaid, built an online matching registry to help home clients find the workers they need, and established time-and-a-half pay for holidays, among other gains.  Through these accomplishments, we are finally beginning to address the severe care crisis in our state, which has only been getting worse for years because of the low pay and lack of benefits provided for this important work.

“I am relieved and happy that this latest court case was ruled in our favor, as so many others have been over the last few years. The first two lawsuits trying to take away our union were filed a month before our union election, way back in the summer of 2014, and we have been under nonstop legal and public assault by anti-union groups ever since. As home care workers and people who receive home care services, we resolved to never let these extremist attacks stop us from making progress for the people of Minnesota, nearly every one of which will need home care services at some point in our lives.

“We have a lot of work left to do to address the state’s care crisis. Big-money groups fighting for years to tear down what we have won so far is a tragic misuse of time and energy. As someone who’s done home care work for over ten years and also as someone who has family members who receive care, I believe we should all be united as Minnesotans in working towards solutions to fix the care crisis. Whether Democrat or Republican, we all have been or will be impacted by the shortage of caregivers because of low pay and lack of benefits, so I hope we can put these divisive court cases and anti-union attack campaigns behind us. Let’s come together to make sure every Minnesotan can get safe, quality care and stay in their home with their loved ones.”

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Locked Out Mayo Albert Lea Workers Stay Strong, Will Celebrate Holidays With Families Despite Mayo’s Christmas Lockout

Albert Lea, Minn – Workers with hundreds of years of service to the Albert Lea hospital continue to be out in the cold because of Mayo’s Christmas lockout. The workers went on a one-day ULP strike on Tuesday in the fight for good jobs and quality rural healthcare. When they attempted to return to work on Wednesday they were blocked from returning and locked out over Christmas. They picketed the rest of the week, joined by countless elected officials and union & community supporters. There will be no picketing over the weekend and Christmas as workers will spend time with their families. The group will return to work at 6am on Tuesday, Decem25626180_10155666844281928_1945528603961694497_ober 26th.

“We refused to let Mayo’s locking us all out on Christmas break our spirit. I am so proud that our group is standing strong for what is right. We haven’t wavered one bit, and we are as committed as ever to winning this fight for good jobs and good healthcare. It feels good that our union and community made sure everyone was taken care of, and we are going to stick together and continue our fight for what is right,” said Heather Olson, who has worked for 12 years as a housekeeper at Mayo.

While Mayo kicked the group of mothers, fathers and grandparents out in the cold, their union and community jumped to stand with them and ensure they would not miss a paycheck during Mayo’s Christmas lockout. The two sides will have a bargaining session on December 28th in Albert Lea after Mayo finally agreed to sit back down with the workers.

“After a year of not moving an inch, we were surprised to see Mayo telling reporters they were so interested in negotiating with us once they locked us out over Christmas,” said Justin Yost, who has worked in the utilities department for 14 years. “We will see next week if their actions match their words. The one thing we know is that all of us who were kicked to the curb by Mayo are stronger and more united than ever in fighting for good jobs and good healthcare. We don’t make $2.8 million per year like Mayo CEO Dr. Noseworthy, so our family’s futures are depending on it.”

Mayo’s decision to choose to respect temporary workers from out of the community over long-term employees who have lived in Albert Lea for decades was another instance of the misplaced values Mayo continues to show as they work to undermine good jobs and roll back the healthcare in rural Minnesota, all in the name of more profits and higher executive pay.

Despite Mayo’s cold shoulder to workers, many of whom have decades of experience making sure the hospital is run well for patients, the workers who have been locked out expressed gratitude for the support from elected officials, community members and other unions who have joined them on the picket line and supported in numerous other ways.

 To reciprocate the support, union members have collected toys and food and will be delivering them to children in need the week of Christmas.

“Just because Mayo is treating people in Albert Lea this way doesn’t mean we need to stoop to that level as well. This week has made clear that our community can and must stick together if we have a chance of winning the jobs and healthcare we deserve. We want to give back just a little, and we will use the Christmas season as a chance to support our fellow Albert Lea residents by sharing with those less fortunate than we are,” said Dave Larson, who has worked doing utilities at the hospital for 10 years. “We hope Mayo uses this holiday season to look in the mirror and decide if in 2018 they want to continue to be the kind of place that locks out hard-working employees, or if they want to be an employer that listens and meets people in the community halfway.”

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SEIU Healthcare Minnesota unites more than 35,000 healthcare and long-term care workers in hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, and home care throughout the state of Minnesota

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Mayo Clinic Locks Out Workers Over Christmas, Many of the Workers Have Decades of Service to Mayo and the Community

Albert Lea, Minn — On Tuesday, December 19th, hospital workers at Mayo Clinic Albert Lea went out on the first ever one-day ULP strike at Mayo Clinic. When the workers returned to go back to work on Wednesday morning at 6am, Mayo management and security blocked them from entering, thereby locking out the 79 people who work as certified nursing assistants (CNAs), housekeepers, sterile processing and in utilities and materials management for seven days, including Christmas. Mayo backed down on their lockout threats for the the 2nd bargaining unit of six skilled maintenance workers.
DRfQFOOVoAUtn83.jpg-largeCharlotte Nelson-Schocker, who has worked at Mayo Clinic for 28 years doing materials management, expressed the shock and frustration felt by workers who were being locked out over Christmas.
“This makes me mad, sad and frustrated. We have given so much to Mayo, and now that we stood up for what is right for workers and our community, management have chosen to lock us out over Christmas,” said Neslon-Schoker. “I can’t believe it has come to this. We won’t stop fighting for what is right. I am so happy to have such amazing support from our union and community. The support means that even though Mayo has locked us out, we know we aren’t alone in our fight for good jobs and quality healthcare.”
More plans for the week will be announced today, with locked out workers speaking out at 11am.
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SEIU Healthcare Minnesota unites more than 35,000 healthcare and long-term care workers in hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, and home care throughout the state of Minnesota

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Albert Lea Hospital Workers Strike Mayo Clinic for First Time Ever

Hundreds picket as part of one-day strike, with workers supported by community members, multiple Gubernatorial candidates and other elected officials

Strikes comes as workers and community are fighting for good jobs and quality rural healthcare in face of #MayoGreed 

 

Albert Lea, Minn — Hospital workers at Mayo Clinic Albert Lea walked off the job on a one-day Unfair Labor Practice (ULP) strike this morning at 6am. It is the first strike in the history of Mayo Clinic, and comes after countless bargaining sessions where the workers strived to find a compromise with Mayo despite Mayo’s insistence on undermining the security of the working families. The workers voted overwhelmingly to authorize their one-day Unfair Labor Practice (ULP) strike late last month. The historic action comes as Mayo continues to demand changes that would undermine good jobs in the community and further the erosion of rural healthcare in southern Minnesota. Workers were joined by elected officials, including multiple candidates for Governor, other elected officials, and unions who shared their support for the workers. (Statements of support from elected officials and supportive unions to be sent out after 11am rally)

 
rs_Albert_Lea_Mayo_HCMN_strikeSheri Wichmann, who has worked in Sterile processing for 18 years
, shared why hospital workers are out on strike today.

“We are out on strike today because it is insulting that Mayo has treated us and our community this way. We are committed to our job and our community, and all we’re asking for is that Mayo recognizes our value. We care deeply about what happens as we are not just employees, but patients at this hospital,” said Wichmann. “We are not asking for the world, just a contract that is fair so we can feel some security for our families. We hope this will make Mayo realize they need to come to the table and negotiate in good faith.”

Since the vote, Mayo has threatened their employees with a seven-day lockout if they follow through with their legally-protected right to strike, a lockout that would mean workers with hundreds of years of service to Mayo patients would be locked out over Christmas. It comes during a time when Mayo’s revenues last year reached over $5 billion and Mayo’s CEO Dr. Noseworthy saw a 11% pay increase to $2.8 million per year.

Perry Jensen has worked at the hospital for 20 years in the utilities department and shared why he joined his co-workers in going on strike, even in the face of threats from Mayo.

“I’m going on strike because I am disappointed in Mayo’s ‘my way or the highway’ bargaining. It’s hard to feel valued or appreciated with what they are offering us and what they are proposing to take away,” said Jensen. “It feels like there isn’t the concern for us as employees and community members like there used to be. They won’t budge at all and want to force us to take what they want without sitting down and bargaining. It is a slap in the face. This was always a good place to work, but it is turning more into a corporate feel. I hope this strike makes them realize all we want is for them to sit down and bargain with us for what is fair for everyone.”

Joining striking workers were community members like Jeanine Anderson who shared support for the workers fighting for good jobs and quality rural healthcare.

“As a major employer here, Mayo sets the standard for jobs and the decisions they make about employment have a direct and immediate impact on this community,” said Jeanine Anderson, who worked as a manager at Mayo for 37 years before recently retiring. “The workers out here exemplify everyone in our community who depends on Mayo for good, secure jobs and quality healthcare. People come from around the world to be treated at the Mayo clinic, but our community’s needs are being thrown by the wayside. We are standing with the workers because our community needs to have a voice or we will lose out even more.”

The striking workers included the general group bargaining unit, consisting of 79 members who work as certified nursing assistants (CNAs), housekeepers, sterile processing and in utilities and materials management, who have been bargaining for over a year. Joining the larger group are six skilled maintenance workers who have been without a contract for over two years.

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SEIU Healthcare Minnesota unites more than 35,000 healthcare and long-term care workers in hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, and home care throughout the state of Minnesota.

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