Pickets back up at Kaiser Permanente


Members of Portland-based SEIU Local 49 picketed three Kaiser Permanente hospitals the week of July 24-28 to protest unsafe staffing levels and draw attention to difficulty getting an acceptable new union contract.

Local 49 bargains as part of the Coalition of Kaiser Permanente Unions, which represents 85,000 workers in 12 union locals in seven states plus Washington D.C.. The coalition has been meeting with Kaiser since April to bargain new contracts. Its existing contracts expire Sept. 30.

At a July 26 picket at Kaiser’s Interstate Medical Office in North Portland,  Local 49 member Jeffrey Sanders said Kaiser executives are out of touch with what it’s like to be a health care worker. Sanders, a Portland Kaiser employee who orders and delivers supplies, is on leave through January to work on the union contract. He serves on the national bargaining team.

“We want them to commit to get us back to a place where we really truly take pride in our jobs and feel valued and respected,” Sanders told the Labor Press.


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