Labor Pains: Because Being in a Union can be Painful

The Raiding Party: SEIU attacks another union for deal with city of LA

As cities across California and moreover, the entire state face financial obligations they can’t meet, the city of LA was on the cusp of reducing costs when the SEIU stepped in to bully another union.

Heaven forbid that the city of LA should be able to reign in employment costs and that another union be able to accept a deal the SEIU isn’t happy with.

According the the LA Times:

“Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and his top budget advisers thought they negotiated a labor contract last week that would begin to address the steadily rising cost of employee healthcare benefits. But that deal, reached with the 4,800-member Engineers and Architects Assn., has come under attack from members of another civilian employee union, which contends that the agreement contains “unprecedented and dangerous” concessions and should be rejected.

With the Engineers and Architects voting on the tentative agreement this week, organizers with Service Employees International Union Local 721 have begun warning that the proposed pact is part of a larger effort to “divide and conquer” the city’s civilian employee groups.”

The head of the beleaguered union says that behind the SEIU’s interest in the deal is their ongoing attempts to raid his union. So much for the “new directions” under Mary Kay Henry:

“Any move by one union to interfere with the negotiations of another union will ultimately backfire,” Szabo said, “because the city is likely to impose these healthcare provisions and more on those who opt out of the deal.” Michael Davies, interim executive director of the Engineers and Architects, said the Service Employees International Union is opposing the deal as part of its push to raid his union’s membership. Last fall, nearly 2,000 workers from his organization moved to the SEIU.

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