Orange, California (February 13, 2012) – A healthcare worker has filed federal charges against a major healthcare union and hospital officials for illegally rigging a union organizing “vote” and then forcing workers to accept an unwanted union in the workplace.
With free legal assistance from the National Right to Work Foundation, Marlene Felter of Costa Mesa filed the charges with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).
Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Healthcare Workers West union officials and Chapman Medical Center management entered into a backroom deal known as a so-called “neutrality agreement” designed to grease the skids for workers to be forced into union ranks.
In the agreement, company officials granted union operatives access to company facilities to conduct a coercive “card check” organizing campaign, and waived the right to have a federally-supervised secret ballot election to determine whether employees wished to be unionized. Union organizers frequently use “card check” organizing tactics to bribe, browbeat, or cajole workers into forced-union-dues payments against their will.
In response to the union’s coercive tactics, a majority of hospital workers signed cards, letters, and petitions stating that they did not want the SEIU union bosses’ so-called “representation.” Instead of respecting the employees’ wishes, Chapman officials accepted SEIU union officials as the workers’ monopoly bargaining agents after a rigged “card count” was held. Chapman and SEIU officials are now negotiating a contract, which almost certainly will include a provision to force the workers to pay union dues or fees as a condition of employment because California does not have a Right to Work law that makes union membership and dues payment strictly voluntary.
The federal unfair labor practice charges ask for an injunction to stop hospital and SEIU officials from illegally negotiating a contract on the basis of the fraudulent “card check” union recognition because the union does not have majority support of the workforce.
“Chapman and SEIU officials have colluded to shove SEIU union bosses’ ‘representation’ – and with it forced dues payments – down workers’ throats,” said Mark Mix, President of National Right to Work. “Schemes like this show that the ultimate goal of union officials is more forced dues collected from workers, even when rank-and-file employees want nothing to do with the union.”
The National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation is a nonprofit, charitable organization providing free legal aid to employees whose human or civil rights have been violated by compulsory unionism abuses. The Foundation, which can be contacted toll-free at 1-800-336-3600, assists thousands of employees in more than 250 cases nationwide per year.