SEIU 1199 officials concede defeat after a majority of employees sign petition backing Federal Labor Board-run decertification election

Brookline, MA (June 24, 2024) – Employees at HRI Hospital, Inc in Brookline, MA have won their freedom from Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 1199, which also calls itself the “United Healthcare Workers” union. HRI Hospital employee Veronica Kpodo filed a petition on behalf of a majority of the 100 healthcare workers seeking a vote to remove the union. The decertification petition was filed with free legal aid from the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation.

Kpodo filed the petition on June 17 with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), the federal agency responsible for enforcing federal labor law, which includes administering elections to install (or “certify”) and remove (or “decertify”) unions. Kpodo’s petition contained support from a majority of employees in the bargaining unit made up of registered nurses, mental health workers, unit secretaries, dietary, utility servers, and switchboard workers.

Rather than contest the election, which had the backing of a majority of employees who would have been eligible to vote, SEIU union officials conceded defeat days after the decertification petition was filed by announcing their intention to disclaim recognition. Soon after, on June 24, 2024, the NLRB officially recognized that the SEIU was no longer the monopoly bargaining representative of the employees, meaning Kpodo and her colleagues had won their campaign to remove the union.

Massachusetts is not a Right to Work state, meaning that union officials have the power to force employees, like those at HRI Hospital, to pay fees to a union as a condition of keeping their jobs. In contrast, in Right to Work states union membership and financial support are strictly voluntary.

However, even in Right to Work states, federal law grants union officials the power to impose their “representation” on all workers in a unit, even those who oppose the union or voted against its presence. To end that forced representation, workers can choose to exercise their right under federal law to decertify a union they oppose.

“We are glad to hear these employees successfully exercises their right to cut ties with unwanted SEIU union bosses,” said National Right to Work Foundation President Mark Mix. “Obviously SEIU officials saw the writing on the wall, which is why they quickly conceded defeat and walked away.”

“This is just the latest example of the growing demand among workers across the country for Foundation assistance in exercising their legal rights to remove unwanted unions from the workplace,” added Mix. “We encourage other workers who want to learn about their workplace rights, including the right to decertify an unwanted union, to contact the Foundation for free legal information and assistance.”


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 about 200 cases nationwide per year.

Posted on Jun 24, 2024 in News Releases