SEIU Union Members at Fairmont Regional Medical Center Win Nearly $1,000,000, Continue Litigation Plans for 401K Contributions
For Immediate Release: Wednesday, April 6, 2020
For more information, contact: Joyce Gibson, email@example.com, 304-654-0824
Union Workers at Fairmont Regional Medical Center Win Nearly $1,000,000, Continue Litigation Plans for 401K Contributions
SEIU District 1199 Members, with the help of Governor Jim Justice and Attorney General Patrick Morrisey, leverage $844,342.49 from Alecto Healthcare to pay Union workers for earned benefit time.
FAIRMONT, WV – Today, the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) District 1199 WV/KY/OH announced a major victory for the hospital workers who were displaced from Fairmont Regional Medical Center when from Alecto Healthcare ceased operations. While the specifics of the settlement are confidential, Union leaders were able to secure all earned benefit time to be paid out to hospital workers including all paid-time-off (PTO), accrued vacation time, and bonus days.
In addition to being owed this earned benefit time, hospital workers plan to continue to work with Attorney General Patrick Morrisey to pursue litigation against Alecto Healthcare for 401K contributions the California-based, for-profit healthcare corporation still owes Union members.
“This is a major victory for the workers of Fairmont Regional Medical Center, who continued to provide quality care to this community up until the day Alecto shuttered the doors of the hospital,” said Joyce Gibson, Regional Director for SEIU District 1199 WV/KY/OH. “By working with Governor Justice and Attorney General Morrisey, we are sending a message that if you are going to do business in West Virginia, you have to treat our workers with dignity and respect.”
West Virginia Governor Jim Justice and Attorney General Patrick Morrisey have been working with Union leaders since first learning of Alecto’s plan to close Fairmont Regional Medical Center.
“I am pleased to hear that Alecto has agreed to pay nearly $1 million in paid time off to employees who earned that money through their hard work and loyalty at Fairmont Regional Medical Center,” Attorney General Morrisey said. “This is an important first step by Alecto, but make no mistake that our office remains committed to taking every step possible to help the workers who were improperly treated.
“These employees did not ask for the sudden closure of Fairmont Regional Medical Center. It was forced upon the employees and the community at large amid global pandemic. Our office intends to leave no stone unturned. Employees of Fairmont Regional, as well as those at Ohio Valley Medical Center, deserve nothing less,” Morrisey added.
Fairmont Regional Medical Center Turns Back on Community, Workers During Time of Need
For Immediate Release – Wednesday, March 25, 2020
Contact: Joyce Gibson, firstname.lastname@example.org, 304-654-0824
During life-threatening pandemic, Alecto Healthcare violates federal and state law to shutter hospital, leaving workers unemployed and uncompensated.
FAIRMONT, WV – Alecto Healthcare Services, a California company, today made the decision to turn their back on the registered nurses and other healthcare workers of Fairmont Regional Medical Center by denying hospital workers the wages and benefits that had previously been promised. After meeting with hospital executives to bargain over the impact of the hospital closure for employees, workers learned from Alecto that they would not be paid out their earned benefit time or have their healthcare coverage extended.
“This is a slap in the face to the people and patients of West Virginia during the largest health crisis this state has ever seen,” said Joyce Gibson, Regional Director for the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) District 1199 WV/KY/OH. “Hospital executives pleaded with our nurses and other care providers to continue to provide quality care until the last day of operations, but then rewarded them by refusing to pay our members for their earned leave time like vacation, personal and sick leave.”
Union officials plan to file a lawsuit against Fairmont Regional Medical Center, and their parent company Alecto Healthcare Services, for violations to state and federal law, including their failure to follow the warren notice as well as violations to labor law in order to ensure every person who worked at the hospital receives the pay and benefits they were promised.
“What Alecto did to the people of the Fairmont community should be criminal,” continued Gibson. “To shutter the doors of Fairmont Hospital at a time when people in West Virginia need every doctor, nurse, and care provider they can find is inhumane and will put more lives at risk in our community.”
Union leaders will be having conversations with their members and legal representatives about next steps and potential legal actions against Alecto.
SEIU District 1199 Members on the Front Lines of the COVID-19 Crisis; Local Nurses Sound the Alarm About Personal Protective Equipment
For Immediate Release – Wednesday, March 25, 2020
Contact: Joyce Gibson, email@example.com, 304-654-0824
“We have an obligation to make sure that these essential workers have the personal protective equipment (PPE) they need to protect themselves, their co-workers, their families, and those for whom they provide care.”
HUNTINGTON, WV – SEIU District 1199 members work across the Huntington region and provide critical health care services working at area nursing homes, the American Red Cross, and as hospital workers, including at Cabell Huntington Hospital.
“Our local health care workers work every day to provide the best possible care and related services on behalf of the public,” said Joyce Gibson, West Virginia Director for SEIU District 1199. “We have an obligation to make sure that these essential workers have the personal protective equipment (PPE) they need to protect themselves, their co-workers, their families, and those for whom they provide care.”
Across the nation, advocacy groups, health care workers, providers, and public health officials, have been sounding the alarm about the need for more personal protective equipment for front line health care workers before any potential crisis deepens. Gibson continued, “if they do not have the masks they need, that puts them and their families at-risk. ” In recent days, nurses with Cabell Huntington Hospital have expressed concern about hospital policies and the availability of personal protective equipment.
“If we have a shortage of masks, which we are being asked to re-use, we risk creating cross-contamination. We are asking the community to support our efforts in contract negotiations and to stand with us as we work to protect health and safety for our families and the patients we serve. We are also asking for affordable and adequate healthcare at a time when we will all need it the most,” said Melanie Chapman, an intensive care unit nurse. “We can’t delay. Action on personal protective equipment is needed now,” concluded Gibson.
Together, We Are Union Strong
Your Union is standing with you in this time of crisis. Together, members of SEIU District 1199 and workers across our country will beat COVID-19, just as we did with epidemics of the past. From staffing issues to paid leave and safety, standing together is more critical than ever.
Update for Members on COVID-19
SEIU District 1199 is proud to represent health care workers and others who work on behalf of the public. Members of the Union stand with their co-workers every day for fair wages and benefits, in addition to speaking out on behalf of the public in regards to issues such as safety.
We know that many members are concerned about COVID-19, which is a new risk for workers, the public, and our families. While we don’t yet know the impact of COVID-19, it is important to be prepared. I want you to know that we are ready to stand with you.
At the national level, SEIU is fighting for expanded unemployment insurance and paid sick leave for workers who are unable to work due to exposure and/or illness related to COVID-19. It is also imperative that workers have the proper training and equipment, if needed, to stay safe while providing vital services.
Your Member Resource Center is open Monday through Friday. If you face issues on the job related to COVID-19, please know that we will be working overtime and are here to stand with you. The Member Resource Center can be reached by calling 877-419-7348.
Becky Williams – President
SEIU District 1199 WV/KY/OH
Courtland Acres Members Negotiate New Contract With Improved Wages and Safety
Members with Cortland Acres, a long-term care facility in Thomas, West Virginia, work every day to provide the best possible care. They recently stood strong together to negotiate a new contract, which will make a real difference for those who work at the facility and their families.
• Starting Wages – These wages will increase by $1 in the first year for the entire bargaining unit. Starting wages will increase $1 in the second year and third years for Certified Nursing Assistants. On March 1, 2022, the starting wage for CNA’s will reach $14 an hour. All workers who are below these new rates will be brought up to the new starting rate as wages increase.
• Wage Increases – In addition to the new start rates, wages will increase by $0.75 in the first year, $0.75 in the second year, and $0.75 in the third year.
• Mandation – This contract contains updated mandation language, which will help members of the bargaining unit and improve safety.
• Shift Differential – Workers will now earn $0.25 an hour extra for work between 7am on Friday and 7am on Monday.
This new contract included no concessions. We are stronger together.
Members at Heritage Center Stand Together to Bargain New Contract Agreement
Members with Heritage Center in Huntington voted last week to unanimously ratify a new contract. No matter where we come from or what our background, we work hard for our families. Members worked together to bargain this contract which will lift wages and strengthen the chapter, representation, and the ability of members to speak out for themselves, their co-workers, and residents.
• Wages. Under new and improved start rates, all workers will be brought up to the new starting wage. Thirty seven members with this facility will be getting a $1 to $1.50 an hour raise in the first year. In addition to the new rates, wages will increase $0.40 in the first year, $0.30 in the second year, and $0.35 in the third year.
• Member Resource Center. The contract includes language related to the Member Resource Center, which will help with providing enhanced representation.
• Paid Union Orientation. The contract now includes 1 hour of paid union orientation, which will assist member leaders as they keep the chapter strong.
• Labor Management. Language was improved in this area which will further enable members to have a voice with management.
• Holiday Time-Off Requests. Members had some difficulty in this area and contract language has been improved as far as requesting time-off for holidays.
This new three year contract includes no concessions. We are stronger together.
Solidarity Newsletter – March 2020
Member News and Grievance Victories
• ResCare Member in Ohio Granted Retroactive Pay. A member with ResCare in Belmont County believed that their pay was not being calculated properly, as they were missing a wage increase and not receiving “PILOB,” an optional hourly add-on in lieu of benefits. The member contacted the Member Resource Center to file a grievance. Working with the Union, the member’s rate was updated and retroactive pay totaling over $1,500 was issued.
• Ohio Nursing Home Members Secure Breaks. At a recent meeting with management, members with a nursing home in the Youngstown area expressed concern that members of the bargaining unit were not able to take necessary breaks. Having a Union means having a voice and after raising this issue as a group, management agreed to implement new scheduling procedures.
• West Virginia ResCare Member Successfully Challenges Corrective Action Plan. A dedicated member with ResCare in Cabell County was issued a corrective action plan. The member believed that the plan was unfounded and joined together with the Union to file a grievance. As an outcome of the grievance, the corrective action plan was removed from the member’s employment file entirely.
• Cleveland Community School District Member Awarded Job Transfer. A member with CMSD wanted to transfer to a new school but believed the contract was not being followed in regards to transfers. Working together, the Union found that the contract was not being followed in this area. As a result and as mandated by the contract, the member was awarded the transfer.
• Ohio Nursing Home Member Returns to Preceptor Program. A member with a nursing home in Ohio was given a warning and removed from a training program, which was an important opportunity. The member believed the removal was unfounded and worked with the Union to file a grievance. In a successful outcome, the member has returned to the program.
Member Resource Center Update
The Member Resource Center provides assistance each day to a substantial number of members across West Virginia, Ohio, and Kentucky. Whether you need a copy of your contract, assistance contacting Union staff, or advice on how to file a grievance, representatives with the Member Resource Center are standing by to assist members each Monday through Friday. “Your Member Resource Center Has Your Back!”
Update for Members on COVID-19 (2/27)
We have heard the concerns of members, partners, and allies regarding the recent spread of the Coronavirus Disease 2019, also known as COVID-19. SEIU District 1199 is proud to represent health care workers and others who work every day on behalf of the public.
While recent reports show that the outbreak is not yet a serious threat in our region, we also know that it is important for everyone to have the facts and to be prepared. At this link is a fact sheet on COVID-19.
If you have any questions or need assistance, visit this page by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or you can contact them at 800-232-4636.
Technical & Therapist Unit Workers With Cabell Huntington Hospital Vote to Form a Union
Technical Workers and Therapist Unit – CT Specialist Techs, Medical Lab Tech II’s, Nuclear Medicine Techs, X-Ray Techs, Radiation Therapists, Respiratory Therapists, and Ultrasound Techs With Cabell Huntington Hospital Vote to Form a Union and Join Together With Hospital Nurses, Maintenance, and Service Workers
By a majority vote, technical workers at Cabell Huntington Hospital say YES to joining a Union.
HUNTINGTON, WV – Yesterday, over 150 technical workers voted to stand together and negotiate with Cabell Huntington Hospital after voting to organize their Union with the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) District 1199 WV/KY/OH. In late 2019, 1,000 registered nurses with Cabell Huntington Hospital voted to unionize in one of the biggest organizing victories since West Virginia became a “right-to-work” state. SEIU District 1199 has also represented 1,000 service and maintenance workers with the hospital for over 40 years.
“The workers of Cabell Huntington Hospital work hard every day to provide the best quality care to the patients and community they serve,” said Joyce Gibson, Regional Director with SEIU District 1199 WV/KY/OH. “It is important that these workers have the ability to hold hospital executives accountable, and negotiate a fair and equitable legally binding contract.”
These technical workers have worked side-by-side with SEIU members in every area of Cabell Huntington Hospital. Now, they will all have a stronger voice together. SEIU now represents over 2,000 workers at Cabell Huntington Hospital.
“These important technical workers will have a voice in wages, benefits, and working conditions,” Gibson continued. “Like the other unionized workers at Cabell Huntington Hospital, they know that by uniting together, they can stand up for our patients, our community, and our families.”
Contact | Joyce Gibson, SEIU District 1199 Regional Director | 304-654-0824 |