Mayo Rochester Methodist Hospital Full Contract Ratified

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2019 Scholarship Winners – Spring Semester


We had a record number of members enter our union’s scholarship contest last month. The essays submitted were all terrific! We want to thank all of the members and children of members who participated! Congratulations to the winners of the January Scholarship Essay Contest.

Mindy Tomfohrde Scholarships Screen Shot 2019-03-06 at 2.44.22 PMContest Winners:

  • Wendy Harrison, St. Francis
  • Jessica Determan, HealthPartners

Got your Back Scholarship Contest Winners:

  • Krysta Anderson, Park Nicollet Methodist Hospital
  • Yasmin Banishoraka, Home Care

Cecelia Razook Scholarship Contest Winner:

  • Jacob Elfmann, child of HealthPartners member Mary Elfmann

Dr. Martin Luther King Scholarship Winner:

  • Makeda Tadesse, child of United Hospital member Medhin Abuhay

The next scholarship opportunity will be for Fall Semester. The deadline to submit is August 31, 2019. For more information go to: seiuhealthcaremn.org/member-resources/scholarships/

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SEIU Home Care Workers Announce Tentative Agreement With State of Minnesota

SAINT PAUL — Late Monday night the home care workers of SEIU Healthcare Minnesota reached a Tentative Agreement (TA) with the state of Minnesota for their third union contract, a two-year contract that would begin in July of 2019.

HCW_group_photo_rsThe bargaining team — made up of home care workers, clients and family caregivers — negotiated with the state over three months to reach this agreement. The bargaining team fought to address the care crisis, a workforce shortage that has grown to over 8,000 openings because of the low wages and lack of benefits for this work. This crisis continues to result in seniors and people with disabilities not being able to find workers to provide the care that they need to stay safely in their homes.

The full details of the TA won’t be shared until members have a chance to see the tentative agreement and vote on its approval, but highlights include funding so reimbursement rates and client budgets will go up 2.37% for everyone, with those making the minimum wage seeing a 10.4% wage increase from $12 to $13.25; $750,000 for trainings and orientation to help workers gain and build skills; increased Paid Time Off; and an additional increase in wages for workers serving clients who need the highest hours of care.

Dalene Annen, a home care worker on the bargaining team from rural Minnesota, shared her feelings about the tentative agreement as someone who does this critical work.

“The work done by home care workers is critical for thousands of families across Minnesota, which is why we fight so hard to improve our industry. We’re proud of the gains that we’ve made in this contract, but we know that we have a lot more work to do to get the kind of wages, benefits and recognition that can fix the care crisis,” said Annen, who lives in Winnebago, a small town near the Iowa border. “The money we secured for home care workers and our clients will help to make a more dedicated workforce and move us to our goal of making sure that every Minnesotan– no where we live, the color of our skin, or our income– can get quality care to be able to stay in their homes and not be forced into institutions. Because we’ve stuck together, caregivers are getting better wages and benefits than we had before.”

If the Tentative Agreement gets ratified by Union members, it will then go to the legislature for their approval and funding. The final step would be having it signed by Governor Walz and go into effect July 1st, 2019. The negotiations took place in the months preceding budget negotiations in order to ensure that legislators have the opportunity to review the terms of the proposed agreement and vote on whether to ratify it.

Lauren Thompson, a client who was on the bargaining team, stressed the importance of the legislature ratifying the agreement once it gains approval from home care workers.

“After years of under investment in this workforce, and undervaluing the people who rely on these services, this contract is a step towards addressing the care crisis. Elected officials statewide must look beyond party lines and understand the importance of investing in home care. It is a matter of dignity and quality of life, it is a matter of survival,” said Thompson. “Home care workers, clients and our families will be at the Capitol this session to make sure that the contract gets ratified and that these gains are upheld. We will continue to strive for better wages, benefits and professional standards that home care workers deserve. This is vital so that I, and the thousands of other Minnesotans like me, will be able to survive and thrive in our homes and in our community.”


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Stillwater Medical Group

EMPLOYER: HealthPartners
WORKSITE: Stillwater Medical Group
1500 Curve Crest Blvd
Stillwater, MN 55082
PHONE: 651-439-1234
WEBSITE: healthpartners.com/find/clinics/stillwater-medical-group/stillwater


Internal Organizer: Youssef El Hamawi

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A Look Back at 2018 and 85 Years Strong (Annual Report)


Our Union, SEIU Healthcare Minnesota, is the oldest Union of healthcare workers in the country. This year, we celebrated the 85th anniversary of our founding. We have grown from a small Union of 200 hospital workers in Minneapolis into a Union of 35,000 healthcare workers, with members in Hospitals, Clinics, Nursing Homes, and Home Care throughout the state of Minnesota. We spent a significant amount of time this year remembering our history while also working to establish new standards for our members today.



In the middle of the great depression, workers throughout the country were fighting for their rights and for legal recognition of their Unions. In the wake of the Minneapolis Teamsters’ Strike, congress passed the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) which created a legal way for workers to form Unions and bargain collectively. Unfortunately, the NLRA left jobs held primarily by women and people of color out of the law. The NLRA excluded health care work, domestic labor and farm labor casting it aside as “not real work”.

In Minnesota, something special happened. The SEIU members at Abbott, Swedish and St. Barnabas Hospitals were not deterred by the limitations of the NLRA. They came together and voted to strike to form their Union anyway. To their credit, the hospital employers recognized our Union and began to bargain a contract. In this manner, our Union, the first Health Care Workers’ Union in the country, was born. Our fight for recognition is special because it included a struggle against racism and gender discrimination in our laws, and in our communities. By taking on these challenges together for the past 85 years, our Union has paved the way and won national standards for our work.

  • In 1949, our Union bargained to abolish gender-based wage scales, establishing equal pay for equal work.
  • That same year our Union demanded and won a 40-hour work week.
  • Our Union was the first in the country to establish a pension plan for healthcare workers.
  • Our members were the first in healthcare to win every other weekend off.
  • Last year, home care members became the first in the country to win paid holidays!


Workers in several greater Minnesota hospitals led the way this year with spirited bargaining campaigns. Members at Mayo Clinic–Albert Lea, finally won their contract after two years of intense negotiations that included a strike, an illegal lock-out, and a week-long “Unfair Labor Practice” trial. By sticking together and authorizing a second strike, members were able to finally win a better deal. At Chippewa County Hospital in Montevideo, members stuck together through an intense anti-Union campaign by management and won an average $1.60/hour wage increase by an independent arbitrator, after members voted to submit their contract to arbitration. As the year ends, hospital workers at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Brainerd are currently fighting against proposed health care premium cost increases that amount to a $2.50/hour wage cut for those with family coverage.
This year also saw the Union trustees to the Twin City Hospital Workers Pension Plan win approval for a significant increase in benefits. Starting Jan. 1, 2019 (and covering all future years) the monthly benefit will increase from $29/month to $31/month per year of service, a 7 percent increase in benefits!
When hundreds of our members who are immigrants to the United States from Liberia faced the potential loss of their right to work in the United States under the Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) program, our Union held “know your rights” trainings for affected members, and we helped members in their successful effort lobby for an extension of the DED program.
This year, Minnesota’s home care workers, saw the launch of new training programs negotiated by our Union. The training program includes a $500 stipend for members completing the program and a pay differential for workers caring for clients with complex care needs. The state also launched the new matching registry that members bargained to create, which will make it easier for home care clients to find workers who need extra hours. As caregivers and Union members we built this great Union to make sure that our work will continue to be seen, as “real work” and that as caregivers- we are treated with dignity and the right to stand up for our patients. We have achieved great things together over the last 85 years and this year was another incredible year of progress for our members!

In Solidarity,
Jamie Gulley

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Twin Ports (Golden Living Center Superior)

Twin Ports (Golden Living Center Superior)

WORKSITE: Twin Ports Health Services
1612 N 37th Street Superior, WI 54880
PHONE: 715-392-5144
WEBSITE: http://twinportshs.com/

CONTRACTS: Twin Ports, CBA, April 1 2017 – March 31 2019

Internal Organizer: Todd Schmitz

Dorothy Boyd
Brenda Kessler

Orientation Leader:
Brenda Kessler

Grievance Leader:
Dorothy Boyd
Brenda Kessler
Joseph McGinnis

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Dues Change FAQs – Effective Jan. 1, 2019

Why are Union dues changing?

The members of SEIU Healthcare Minnesota voted at our annual convention in 2017 to change to a percentage-based dues structure to ensure we will continue to be a strong organization into the future. The change will result in a loss of revenue for the Union.  It will, however, create a more equitable system for all members.

Other considerations that went into the change were:

  • The current dues structures are complicated to explain and members often complained about not understanding them.
  • The complexity of the current systems make them difficult and expensive to administer. Employers make many mistakes each month, resulting in thousands of reconciliations and refunds annually. The change will result in fewer errors, over payments and will be significantly less expensive to administer.
  • Part-time members currently pay the same amount as full-time members, rather than a pro-rated amount. This results in part-time members paying two times as much as full-time members (or more) on a percentage basis. A Percentage based dues structure is fair for everybody and will be based on actual earnings per pay period.


How will the dues change work? 

Dues will be taken out every paycheck based on earnings for that pay period.

Members will pay 2.25% of their earnings per pay period with a cap of $36 a pay period.  There is also a minimum of $5 if worked in a pay period.

For example:

Member wage 80 hours/pay period 40 hours/pay period 20 hours/pay period
$15 $27.00 $13.50 $6.75
$17 $30.60 $15.30 $7.65
$20 $36.00 $18.00 $9.00
$30 $36.00 $27.00 $13.50
$40 $36.00 $36.00 $18.00

The cap for members in Rochester who merged into SEIU will be $22. This cap will increase $.50/year for the next 5 years. The cap for members in Duluth, Cloquet and Superior who merged into SEIU will be $20. This cap will increase $.50/year for the next 5 years. Home care members will continue to pay the 3% dues rate they voted to adopt when joining our union in 2014.

Actual dues amounts per pay period may vary based on actual gross pay per pay period (including differentials and overtime).


What is the percentage and how can I calculate it?

The easiest way to do this is to multiply the gross pay on your paystub by .0225%.  Remember if the amount is more than your per pay per cap of $36 (or $22 or $20)), no more than $36 (or $2 or $20) will be deducted.  If it is less than $5 then $5 will be deducted.


What if I am paid weekly or monthly or during months in which I receive 3 paychecks?

Members working under contracts with 26 pay periods will see dues deducted out of every pay period, including in the two months each year when three pay checks are earned.

Members working under contracts with more, or fewer, than 26 pay periods per year, will see their per pay period percentages, minimums and maximums adjusted to be equal to the 26 pay period calculation in the above dues structure.


Will I be paying more?

Some full-time members will see an increase, but many will end up paying the same (or less) per year, depending on specific earning situations and whether or not a leave of absence or disability leave is taken.  Almost all of our part-time members will see a decrease and members who are currently paying the monthly maximum will see a decrease.  The members who voted to make this change last year believe this structure creates more equitable dues contributions for all members.


Are overtime hours included in the percentage production?

All earnings are included in dues calculations.  This would include compensation for overtime, differentials, call-pay, vacation, sick, holiday, and/or PTO hours. It would not include short-term or long-term disability payments made from a disability plan negotiated in our Union contracts.


What is not included in the deduction?

Members who do not earn money in a pay period, do not owe dues.  All deductions are based on gross earnings/pay period.  For example, if you are on an unpaid leave of absence, you would not pay dues for the time you were off work and not earning money.


It used to be that one check had to use deductions and the other paychecks in the month did not, does this mean my dues are doubling?

No. Dues are not doubling. The dues cap was also changed and lowered to reflect a per pay period deduction. The new annual maximum dues amount will actually be lower than under the previous dues structure and per pay period dues amounts should be about half of what they were on a monthly basis, with some members seeing slightly less and others slightly more. The majority of members will see a decrease in their dues as a result of this change.


I already paid the maximum, does this mean I pay more?

For members on the traditional SEIU dues structure, the cap used to be $79 a month.  It will now be $36/pay period cap. For those paying the maximum every pay period during a year, this will result in a $12 reduction in annual dues.

For members from merged Unions in Rochester, Duluth, Cloquet and Superior, the maximum is increasing as the structure changes from a flat rate to a pro-rated system where part-time members pay a pro-rated amount.


Will dues be changing for home care members?

Home care members will continue to pay percentage dues on a per pay period basis of 3%. The new minimums and maximums, however, will apply to home care members. The vast majority of home care members will see no change in the current per pay period dues system.

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SEIU Members Across Minnesota Celebrate Election of Tim Walz for Governor & Other SEIU-Endorsed Candidates

Members & staff contacted hundreds of thousands of Minnesota voters leading up to election, proud of work in win that shows state is Greater Than Fear

SAINT PAUL — With news that Tim Walz and Peggy Flanagan have been elected as the next Governor and Lt. Governor of Minnesota, SEIU members expressed pride and excitement over their work to help elect these two champions of working people. SEIU members and staff door knocked, phone banked, texted and had worksite conversations with hundreds of thousands of Minnesota voters in the months leading up to the election, making sure they knew which candidates stood with working families.

Walz_SEIU_Member_rsNazra Ahmed, a home care worker who is a member of SEIU Healthcare Minnesota, shared about the tireless work that SEIU members and staff put in this election in order to make sure our state elects candidates who will fight for our families.

“As a home care worker I know the importance of having people who understand and support our families in office. I’m proud of the thousands of hours that SEIU members in Minnesota have put in door knocking and phone banking supporting candidates who support us,” said Ahmed. “I’ve never been involved in politics before this election, but now I feel like I’ve found my voice as I join others working towards electing people who will work with us to build a state where every family — white, black or brown — have quality care so seniors and people with disabilities, and the people who care for them, can live full and happy lives.”

Seeing an educator running for Governor helped motivate members of SEIU Local 284 like Beverly Tinney, a para-educator in the Mounds View Schools and a member of the union who spent months talking to voters about SEIU-endorsed candidates in her free time.

“I’m one of many SEIU members who has been talking to voters across Minnesota for the last few months. I’m happy our hard work has helped move our state in the right direction. Electing Tim Walz, an educator, as our next Governor, is especially important to me. As a public school employee, I know how important it is to have someone in that office who values education,” said Tinney. “We know that we need to continue our work tomorrow for a more fair and equitable world for all families in our state, but I’m glad to know we will be doing it with so many champions of working families in office.”

SEIU members not only talked to fellow union members and general public voters, but ran campaigns to bring in underrepresented voters to the election process. Abdi Haybe, a security officer with SEIU Local 26, helped reach voters from the East African community both in the Twin Cities and in communities across the state.

“Some politicians and their corporate backers tried to divide us by the color of our color, our religion or where we live, but today, with our vote, we showed them that Minnesotans are greater than fear by electing the candidates who offered hope instead of scapegoating and division,” said Haybe. “We worked hard to make sure we got out the vote to elect candidates who support working families. I’m so excited to we elected candidates like Keith Ellison for Attorney General and Tina Smith for Senate to make sure Minnesota is a state that works for ALL families, not just those at the top.”


The SEIU Minnesota State Council coordinates the electoral, legislative and outreach work of the SEIU Locals in Minnesota to increase the effectiveness of their efforts to organize unorganized workers in critical sectors of our economy, improve wages, hours and working conditions, and build political and legislative power for all workers and their families.  The State Council’s board is comprised of elected leaders, SEIU members and staff of the various SEIU Local Unions in Minnesota, and that board, with the active participation and input of our broader membership, determines our endorsements.

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Message to SEIU Voters from Michelle Obama: When We All Vote, We All Do Better

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Job Posting: SEIU Healthcare Minnesota Internal Organizer

SEIU Healthcare Minnesota Internal Organizer



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 member leaders and rank and file.



  • Continuous work on internal organizing within facilities.
  • Identify, recruit, train and develop member leaders; assist in defining member leader roles (New Member, Work Site, Political, Grievance); assist in developing plans for work-site campaigns.
  • Create and implement an onsite visit schedule to be posted on the internal shared calendar
  • Support the member leaders in developing a process for new member orientation
  • 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.



  • High School Diploma or GED, Secondary Education preferred.
  • 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.



  • 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.


  • 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 member leaders; 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 Brenda Hilbrich:  brenda.hilbrich@seiuhcmn.org or fax to 651-294-8200


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