June 22, 2012
Waving “Respect!” signs and chanting “We’re fired up, won’t take it no more,” UAPD delegates joined thousands of others at the AFSCME rally in MacArthur Park in Los Angeles. The rally was just one part of a national AFSCME Convention that called attention to the plight of public service employees in California and across America.
Vice President Joe Biden told convention delegates: “You provide the safe neighborhoods, you provide the good schools, you provide the school lunches, you provide the day care centers, you provide the hospitals, you provide the roads, you provide the ability of people to live a decent middle-class life. We owe you.”
On the final day of the convention, Lee Saunders was elected AFSCME President, replacing Gerald McEntee who retired after a 31 year term.
May 7, 2012
The initiative claims that it will remove “big money interests from politics” by banning unions and corporations from using “payroll-deducted funds for political purposes.” The deceptive part is that corporations almost never use payroll deductions to raise political campaign funds but unions do almost exclusively – sometimes in amounts as low as $1 a week.
From the San Francisco Chronicle
April 20, 2012
The Legislative Analyst’s Office (LAO), which provides fiscal and policy advice to the State Legislature, has issued a disturbing new report that recommends transferring medical care for the state’s prisoners to outside contractors.
Read the full LAO report here.
While acknowledging there are “some legal hurdles to overcome if the state were to contract out for additional inmate medical care services,” the LAO goes on to suggest ways that the State might evade the existing restrictions on outsourcing. The report uses the fact that the State “lacks employees with sufficient expertise to adequately manage a medical care system” in the prisons as proof that all prison medical care should be outsourced. When what is clearly needed are new and better managers! The report is a slap in the face to all the highly-trained doctors now working in the prisons.
UAPD is preparing a response to the report, and will begin speaking to legislators about it next week. In the meantime, we encourage CDCR doctors to review the LAO report here, and provide us with any insights or information you would like shared with legislators.
April 5, 2012
California workplace safety officials have fined Coalinga State Hospital more than $20,000, alleging in part that the psychiatric facility, which mainly treats sex offenders deemed too dangerous for community release, failed to keep staff members safe from assault and has an inadequate employee alarm system. –Los Angeles Times
Instead of fixing the problems that led to the citations at all five state hospitals, DMH is spending time and money contesting Cal/OSHA’s findings. The department has filed an appeal of the Napa and Metropolitan citations, and is expected to do the same for the citations issued against the other three hospitals. State-employee unions including UAPD have already received legal-party status in the Cal/OSHA appeals process, so they can try to hold DMH accountable for its inaction. A hearing on the Metropolitan citations is scheduled for May 10 – 11, 2012.
April 5, 2012
UAPD continues its aggressive political and media campaign to stop the proposed ratio change and prevent the layoffs of any treatment staff working within the Department of Mental Health hospitals. To that end, UAPD continues to support Assembly Member Michael Allen’s treatment staff ratio bill (AB 2397), which would make the 1:25 (for long term units) and 1:15 (for acute or admissions units) ratios mandatory. UAPD’s legislative staff is also exploring ways to protect DMH ratios during the development of next year’s state budget. Next week UAPD staff and doctors will be participating in several legislative hearings regarding the DMH staffing issue.
As part of the Safety Now! coalition, UAPD also protested ratio changes during a rally at Metropolitan State Hospital on March 21. The rally garnered excellent press coverage for the issue. Read more …
April 4, 2012
UAPD encourages DMH doctors to take a few minutes to complete this vacancy survey to help the Union identify positions that could be filled by BU 16 doctors in the event of a layoff. Because of the large number of contractors working in the system, UAPD remains hopeful that even if layoffs occur, no doctor who wants to continue working for DMH will be forced to leave.
UAPD will continue its aggressive campaign to protect staff to patient ratios in all DMH facilities, and to prevent these layoffs from occurring.
April 4, 2012
Assemblymember Roger Dickinson believes that fundamental rights, including priority over private-sector contractors in filling permanent, overtime and on-call positions, need to be codified so that they aren’t subject to the whims of whatever governor or particular agency manager who happens to be in charge.
via A bill of rights for state workers?.
April 2, 2012
The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) has begun implementing Wave 2 of the AB 109 staff reductions. They have mailed seniority score verification letters to all those who are working in impacted counties and classifications. They plan for this round of layoffs to go into effect on October 30, 2012.
While UAPD is doing everything in its power to prevent further layoffs of dentists, the Union must also take steps to mitigate the effects of a layoff if one should occur. Part of that process is identifying every open position that can be filled by a bargaining unit doctor. Because vacancy information provided by the State is not always reliable, UAPD asks members to tell us what they see happening around them.
Please take a moment to fill out this survey about possible dental vacancies in any CDCR facility.
UAPD will meet and confer with CDCR on the subject of layoffs; UAPD staff, elected leaders, and members from the affected facilities will attend. UAPD will update members once the first meeting is scheduled.
CDCR posts layoff information on the CDCR website. They also take questions about the layoff via email (CDCR.RPRSHelpDesk@CDCR.ca.gov) and telephone (877-297-5599). If you have further questions, or need assistance, please contact your UAPD Labor Representative.