August 24, 2023
Kaiser’s Values Are Not Our Values
With 37 days left before our contract expires, Kaiser still hasn’t made any proposal to raise wages for healthcare workers even after the pandemic and inflation. For three days, management would not present any proposal to our National Bargaining Team. This is unheard of in the 25 years of our partnership. The only economic proposal they made was to slash the value of our PSP by capping it at $1,400. They still do not want to guarantee a PSP payout for us, although managers would continue to get bonuses regardless of Kaiser’s finances. We were clear with Kaiser that this was not something we were going to accept.
Coalition Unions Announce Strike Authorization Votes Because of Kaiser’s Bad Faith Bargaining.
Based on Kaiser’s priorities, it’s clear we are very far apart. While we continue to insist on wages that keep up with inflation and real solutions to the short staffing crisis, KP management has made no proposal to raise wages, tried to slash our PSP bonus, and is nowhere to be found when it comes to investing in workforce training, limiting outsourcing and so many other important priorities.
On Thursday, we held a press conference – that received national attention in the media – to announce that Coalition unions are holding votes to authorize the bargaining team to call for a strike because of Kaiser’s unfair labor practices and bad faith bargaining. Contact your local union for more information.
Staffing: Bandaids but no Permanent Solutions
Kaiser has not yet responded to our long-term proposals around subcontracting protections and eliminating vacancies. However, our Staffing Committee is working on an agreement for a temporary, one-year accelerated hiring period so we can get to 10,000 positions filled by the end of 2023. It isn’t final yet, but we are discussing:
- Mandatory quicker response times from both managers and employees during bidding
- Helping graduates of training programs get into hard-to-fill jobs
- Expanding experience barrier waivers
- Eliminating duplicative testing requirements
- Fixing communication problems with Taleo
- Paid externships
- High volume hiring events
- Hiring more Futuro Health graduates
- Referral bonuses
- Reduction of registry use
- Workers who are transferred or hired during this one-year agreement would commit to staying in their position
- Increased funding for education
We are far from agreement, but on staffing, in the short-term at least, we are having useful discussions and engagement. We have made it clear to Kaiser that while this quick short-term action is important, staffing shortages have existed for years and are predicted to continue for decades. We also need permanent staffing solutions in our National Agreement.