Expect more picketing outside Kaiser Richmond next week

Expect more picketing outside Kaiser Richmond next week as nurses walk off job
A two-day strike involving Kaiser Richmond nurses in November (shown in the photo above) will be repeated next week as the nurses have announced another two-day walkout.

As we’ve reported, thousands of Kaiser Permanente’s mental health practitioners have walked off the job for a week-long strike ending Friday, including those at the Richmond hospital.

And there will be even more picketing next week.

In a separate action, Kaiser’s registered nurses are planning a two-day strike Jan. 21 and Jan. 22, the unions representing them have announced. The walkout will involve 18,000 RNs and nurse practitioners at 86 Kaiser hospitals and clinics across Northern and Central California, including Kaiser Richmond.

The nurses are decrying what they allege has been a decline in patient care due to cuts to hospital services. The cuts have come despite an increase in the patient population, they said.

“Kaiser has made these cuts despite seeing record profits — $3.1 billion in the first three quarters of 2014 alone, a 41 percent increase over the same period in 2013,” the union said in a statement.

In its own statement, Kaiser said the union leaders’ reasons for walking out “are not supported by facts” and again suggested the unions claims are the result of contentious contract negotiations that began in July.

“We have responded to all of the union’s negotiating proposals, and we look forward to more bargaining sessions,” Kaiser said.

The nurses unions held a similar two-day walkout in November.