UC health workers authorize strike

Patient technical care workers throughout the University of California medical system voted to authorize a strike after months of failed labor negotiations.

Dates and the duration of the strike have yet to be determined. Representatives from the workers’ union, the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Local 3299, said members agreed to give a 10-day notice to allow for patient protection measures to be put in place.

Union officials said a “variety” of issues led to the vote, including the failed labor negotiations, layoffs announced last year, and a report released earlier this year claiming there has been a “detrimental impact that new profit incentives are having on both patients and providers.”

“This was a vote for our patients, our students and our families. And it was a resounding rejection of the UC’s misguided priorities — chronic understaffing, reckless cost-cutting, skyrocketing management payroll and exorbitant seven-figure pensions for top executives,” Local 3299 President Kathryn Lybarger said in a statement.

UC officials have previously said the strike vote is an attempt to “obscure the real issues in the negotiations,” namely pension changes.

The vote by roughly 13,000 patient-care employees took place over three days last month. An estimated 97 percent agreed to authorize a strike, according to union officials.


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