2 Unions to Woo Kaiser Workers in Historic Vote
by Bobby Caina Calvan
Saturday, Jul. 31, 2010 - 12:00 am | Page 6B
A major showdown between two rival unions is expected
to begin Sept. 13 when 44,000 Kaiser workers in
California decide if they will oust their union in
favor of an upstart labor group.
Next week, the National Labor Relations Board is
expected to order a vote-by-mail election that could
last several weeks. It would be the largest
private-sector union election in decades.
The National Union of Healthcare Workers is seeking to
win the right to represent Kaiser employees.
The NUHW is trying to boot out the Service Employees
International Union-United Healthcare Workers, West
from Kaiser facilities.
The SEIU-UHW had sought to hold the election at the
workplace – a move opposed by the NUHW, which said a
mail-in vote would provide a neutral environment for
The NUHW was formed last year after a rift in the SEIU
caused key leaders to splinter off to form the new
union. The two unions have been battling over members
NLRB Sets Sept. 13 as Start for Giant Kaiser Permanente Union Election
San Francisco Business Times - by Chris Rauber
The National Labor Relations Board has set Sept. 13 as
the start date for a by-mail union representation
election at Kaiser Permanente, according to the
National Union of Healthcare Workers, one of the unions
that will take part in the balloting.
Sadie Crabtree, an NUHW spokeswoman, said the agreement
was facilitated and approved by Alan Reichard, the
NLRB's regional director for the area. She said it
calls for ballots to be returned by Oct. 4, and counted
in early October.
The no-love-lost election, between SEIU's incumbent
United Healthcare Workers West local and the new NUHW,
will decide which of the two rivals will represent some
43,000 Kaiser workers statewide -- and gain or retain
access to an estimated $42 million in union dues.
All involved say it will be one of the largest and most
complex union representation battles in many decades.
In fact, Emeryville-based NUHW, headed by longtime UHW
president Sal Rosselli, says it will be the largest
private-sector union election since the 1940s.
NUHW has 5,000 members, including 2,300 Kaiser workers
who joined it in January, after voting for the
breakaway union over the Service Employees
International Union unit.
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