California Kaiser Permanente Workers Authorize Strike, Hospital Decries Process

Kaiser Permanente workers in Southern California and across the state voted overwhelmingly to authorize their union to call a strike if a labor contract cannot be reached, but Kaiser officials accused the union of tainting the vote by using “misleading” ballot language.

According to the Service Employees International Union-United Healthcare Workers West union, 98% of its California members who cast ballots voted in support of a strike, roughly 37,000 people. Union officials said roughly two-thirds of Kaiser workers represented by the union voted.

Strike-authorization votes are expected to continue through mid-September by members of the Coalition of Kaiser Permanente Unions, which includes labor unions in California, Oregon, Washington, Colorado, Hawaii, Virginia, Maryland and the District of Columbia. SEIU officials contend that if a strike occurs, it will be the largest in the nation since the 1997 Teamsters strike against United Parcel Service.

The Coalition overall represents about 80,000 workers.

Read the rest of the story on NBC News


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