Ousted UHW leaders form the NUHW

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rosselli.jpg
Sal Rosselli, Guardian Photo by Charles Russo.

By Steven T. Jones

There’s a new union in town, National Union of Healthcare Workers (NUHW), which was formed today by the United Healthcare Workers leadership team that was yesterday ousted by UHW’s parent union, Service Employees International Union. NUHW might as well stand for the New UHW.
SEIU has imposed a trusteeship on UHW, which involved suspending local bylaws, taking over UHW lists and contractual obligations, formally kicking out more than 70 elected UHW leaders, and appointing as trustees two SEIU executive vice presidents: David Regan and Eliseo Medina.
But UHW leaders continue to occupy the union’s Oakland headquarters, which they’ve used as the base of operations to launch the new union that they hope will be populated by many of UHW’s 150,000 members, who must vote to disaffiliate with SEIU to join the new union.
"As a healthcare workers union, NUHW is committed to continuing the tradition of a member-led, democratically controlled union," ousted UHW head Sal Rosselli said in a prepared statement. "There are lot of things that we still have to figure out, but we know NUHW will be all about accountability to the members, democratic-decision-making, organizing the unorganized and winning improvements for healthcare workers and the patients and residents we serve."
In a conference call with reporters, Regan and Medina blasted the Rosselli team for promoting the schism with SEIU, which had sought to transfer 65,000 long-term care workers from UHW to another SEIU local, something Rosselli says his members urged him to resist. “That battle ended yesterday,” Medina said, while Regan noted that, “It’s sad when a group of local officers lose their way.”
SEIU leaders hope to put the conflict behind them and move forward together to fight deep cuts being proposed in California’s budget, but it’s an open question how many UHW members are going to resist the change and follow Rosselli out the door, something that will become more clear in the coming weeks.

Comments

Let's see, ,the economy is in free fall, workers are being laid off, the City is cutting thousands of jobs and all we see are two white guys fighting a bureaucratic turf war? I'm sure that there are legitimate political grievances involved in this dispute, but given the backdrop against which this is being played, out, all I want to say is "Gentlemen, please, get a hold of yourselves, take a moment to put this in perspective and make this about confronting our immediate crisis."

-marc

Posted by Marc Salomon on Jan. 30, 2009 @ 6:31 am

Just another National union taking workers money for political change without consent of the members. Is that what unions were formed to do...make political change? i think not

Posted by Shastamedic on Feb. 02, 2009 @ 7:24 pm

It is a disgrace what Andy Stern did. This unlawful takeover of a truly democratic union shows what SEIU is all about: collecting dues at all costs! This unilateral coup has shown they no low. They do not care about their members. Viva Sal Rosselli! You will be my president once again! Viva NUHW!

Posted by Brad on Feb. 02, 2009 @ 11:25 pm

SEIU's purpose is mainly just to get more funding...from the members, they did nothing for the members during the bargaining time...now they unlawfully took over UHW without any election from the members. Union should be working for the members not amongst themselves. We are the one paying the union dues, not STERN. And in return, our money will be used against us members , just like what they are doing right now.
We want a union who work for the members not for the employers....Back off SEIU.

Posted by adungding on Jan. 30, 2009 @ 9:04 pm

F@%&K SEIU and all their bull shit lies. SEIU is ALL FOR MANAGEMENT! And the reason for this fight is so we don't become unemployed. We have a union and they should stand up for us the workers; or why are we paying union dues?? Its all about the New union NUHW because they care about Labor we met them facet to face they care not SEIU Liers!

Posted by Roxy on Mar. 12, 2009 @ 6:35 pm

FUCK yeah! go sal! you ROCK! fuck the international! money grubbing pieces of shit

Posted by max murder on Jan. 29, 2009 @ 8:12 am

ANDY STERN YOUR FIRED!!!!!!!!!!!!!! N.U.H.W will win in long run you may know people in high places but i do to ,GOD! and we all know the devil loses in the end .Sal Rosselli is our guardian angel and will lead us to VICTORY.

Posted by TIM CARDOZA on Dec. 10, 2009 @ 4:12 pm