McKenzie-Willamette Caregivers Won’t Back Down – Build to Second Strike

power of the people

SEIU Local 49 members at McKenzie-Willamette Medical Center (MWMC) are considering a five-day strike against the unfair labor practices committed by MWMC management. Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, MWMC has failed their patients and their workers. It’s not right, and we won’t back down. 

Members held a powerful two-day unfair labor practice strike in October of 2021. Despite its huge success in showing management the value of essential workers like us, when bargaining resumed, management continued with proposals that do not meet the needs of patients and workers.  

Their proposals include: 

  • Increasing our healthcare costs by 5% per year 
  • Minimal raises that do not come close to matching cost of living increases in the area and keep McKenzie workers as the lowest paid in the Valley 
  • No COVID protections  

Furthermore, MWMC is planning to move forward with outsourcing nearly 70 workers in the EVS, linen, and dietary departments. As of December 5, 2021, those workers will be employees of Texas-based HHS and will no longer be part of our Union. In fact, those HHS employees can’t legally strike, too, but they can join the picket line in solidarity!  

MWMC is a profitable hospital owned by Tennessee-based Quorum Health Corp, which investors indicate have received nearly $100 million in CARES Act funding in 2020. Even though MWMC turned a profit, and got nearly $4.7 million of those CARES Act funds, they continue to squeeze employees to do more with less. Enough is enough! We know that if we don’t keep up the pressure, they’ll keep outsourcing us, department by department. They’ll keep our wages below what other hospitals pay. They’ll keep coming after us for health insurance costs. They’ll keep understaffing our essential jobs. 

It’s time for McKenzie-Willamette to invest in patient care by investing in essential workers: stop the outsourcing, make real improvements to staffing, ensure crucial COVID protections for frontline workers, and provide a real wage increase that allows workers to care for themselves and their families as the cost of living rises in our community. 

We are going back to the bargaining table this week. We ask you to please sign our petition to show MWMC that Springfield is a Union town, and our community stands with us!

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