Prime Healthcare Services Fights, Wins Against NLRB and SEIUOn Mar 11, 2013 All Categories | Dirty tactics | Latest updates
It’s the usual story most employers face, but with an unexpected ending. The Service Employees International Union shows up, makes demands, and throws a tantrum when they don’t get what they want. Either the employer gives up on account of the bad public relations, or they fight back, usually in the courts. Then it’s up to the labor judges to decide their fate, and recently, the courts have been deciding increasingly in favor of the unions.
So when Prime Healthcare Services, a chain with 21 hospitals in California, refused to comply with demands by the SEIU, one could reasonably expect that the results would not go well for them. And sure enough, the SEIU mounted a bad publicity campaign that would have destroyed a lesser company, accusing the hospital of infecting patients with blood diseases:
About a year ago, the union mounted a propaganda campaign against Prime Healthcare Services because the hospital chain rejected its demands for a “quickie” election for SEIU members… union bosses threatened to accuse the company of hiding proof that Medicare patients were being infected with serious blood diseases. The union knew the Medicare data in question were based on the condition of patients upon admittance rather than reflecting the quality of care. Still, they used the tactic to increase pressure on Prime Healthcare. It didn’t work.
This is par for the course for the SEIU- create false statements about the employer, hoping the employer blinks first. Related: Read more about the SEIU’s dirty tricks here. However, as many of our articles prove, the SEIU is not good at taking “no” for an answer, and often resort to hiding behind the courts to do their dirty work.
Fortunately for the SEIU, the NLRB has been very pro-union under Obama. Unfortunately for the SEIU, the D.C. Circuit has ruled that Obama’s nominations to the NLRB were unconstitutional, rendering many of the cases void, leading to a humorous exchange between the SEIU and Prime Healthcare Services:
In response, Harland sent a letter to the hospital in January, insisting that it comply with the recent NLRB ruling. “I assume that you must employ at least one lawyer who knows how to read,” Harland wrote in a letter he shared with Reuters. “If you had bothered to consult with any first year Labor Law student, you would have learned that on December 12, 2012, the National Labor Relations Board issued a significant ruling, which overruled 50 years of bad law concerning the unilateral cancellation of dues check-off post contract expiration.” Schottmiller responded with a one-line email on Friday that read, “We hope your next letters are more professional and mature.” She attached a copy of the D.C. Circuit’s decision.
This exchange epitomizes the SEIU’s flippant disrespect for management, as well as their ignorance and disregard for the law. The latter isn’t surprising, given the SEIU’s endorsement of the NLRB’s continued flouting of the law, even when it would advantage them. However it is the attitude behind the former that creates the continued problems the SEIU faces, as they continue to lose support across the country and create more and more opposition for themselves.
Prime Healthcare Services’ actions may encourage more employers to take a stand against the unconstitutional NLRB, and the SEIU won’t be able to do anything to stop them.