Veterans nursing home workers vote to stay union

Workers at a nursing home for veterans in The Dalles, Oregon, voted June 10 by 60 to 37 to remain unionized with the United Steelworkers (USW). That meant defeat for an effort to dump the union that represents 170 workers at non-profit Veterans Care Centers of Oregon.

The vote on “decertification” came just weeks after workers there — both union and nonunion — voted to approve a new three-year union contract that raises wages 15%. It’s highly unusual for workers who aren’t members of a union to be allowed to vote on a collective bargaining agreement, but USW representative Jim Kilborn explained that USW agreed in light of the nursing home agreeing, for the first time, that all workers would pay union dues as a condition of employment, a provision known as union security.

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