Reorganization ensures that hospital will retain experienced staff and good jobs stay in area to support local economy
Mountain View, CA – At El Camino Hospital, 119 healthcare workers represented by Service Employees International Union-United Healthcare Workers West (SEIU-UHW) who received layoff notices in August will continue working at the hospital after model labor-management discussions that ensured those who wanted to could continue working at the hospital.
Through reorganization, housekeeping staff, nurse assistants, and other service workers whose jobs were proposed for elimination will remain employed at El Camino Hospital, recognized as one of the nation’s most technologically advanced.
“Our hospital is home to amazing technology, but great people, too,” said David Clymer, a surgical technician. “By working together with management, we figured out how to make sure El Camino Hospital was able to place staff in new positions or areas to avoid layoffs and the economic hit that would mean for area working families and our communities.”
Nicole Bryand, an administrative support staff who served on the labor-management committee addressing the layoffs, agreed: “Avoiding layoffs is a win for working families and for the Silicon Valley economy.”
The contract covering 1,300 healthcare workers in SEIU-UHW at El Camino requires the union and management to explore every available option to avoid layoffs. Discussions began in August to determine how layoffs could be avoided and an agreement was finalized last week.
“I was very worried when I received my layoff notice in August,” said Annie Hart, a radiology assistant. “I’ve never been a union member before, and this experience showed me how important it is for workers to have a voice in decisions like this not only to keep our healthcare system strong but also to support families and the local economy.”
Similarly, SEIU-UHW members have worked with Kaiser Permanente in California when 1,700 layoffs were announced last fall. As a result of labor-management discussions, not a single healthcare worker lost a job. Many of these workers received training for new skills and some even received higher-paying jobs.
SEIU United Healthcare Workers-West (SEIU-UHW) is the largest healthcare union in the western U.S. with more than 150,000 members. SEIU-UHW is part of the 2.2 million-member Service Employees International Union (SEIU).