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Roseville, Calif.- ย– Hospital workers, including radiologists, operating room technicians, environmental services and others, who work for Kaiser Permanente in California, will picket outside their work sites to protest management plans to slash 1,350 of their jobs on Wednesday, September 9 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. outside Kaiser Roseville Medical Center and Kaiser South Bay Medical Center near Long Beach. The pickets will continue on Thursday, September 10 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at Kaiser facilities in Oakland and Woodland Hills.

These are part of a series of pickets that began last week with over 1600 Kaiser workers walking the picket line at Kaiser facilities in Walnut Creek and Santa Clara in Northern California and Sunset and Panorama City in Southern California, and which will bring pickets to over 20 Kaiser facilities during a five-week period.

Nearly 50,000 Service Employees International Union, United Healthcare Workers ย– West (SEIU-UHW), members work for Kaiser in California, in all healthcare facilities and in a wide range of job classifications. They are protesting Kaiser management’s announcement that the company wants to cut more than 1,800 jobs statewide, despite excellent financial performance and the high level of care that Kaiser workers provide to our patients.

“We want to ensure that Kaiser continues to provide quality health care in a safe environment – that, however, only happens when the hospital is staffed correctly.ย  Kaiser Management’s decision to send notices to employees that their position may be eliminated, not only threatens our ability to maintain quality patient care, but was also avoidable,” said Laureen Fowler, who works at Kaiser Roseville. “The picketing is about standing up for our patients, the quality care they deserve and to protect our jobs.”

In mid-August, Kaiser announced its outstanding financial performance for the second quarter. Net income for the quarter was $620 million, almost twice last year’s second quarter and far exceeding its own projections. Just days later, Kaiser announced its intention to eliminate 1,350 bargaining unit positions statewide ย– and informed many of our members by name that their positions were on the list. We oppose this action.

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