Legislative Advocacy

UAPD Fights for DMH Ratios

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 …

Important Survey About DMH Vacancies

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.

AB 1655 Will Support State Workers

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?.

Important Survey On CDCR Dental Vacancies

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.

Legislators ask for halt to Napa State layoffs

March 16, 2012

Local state legislators have sent a letter to Department of Mental Health requesting a moratorium on employee layoffs at state psychiatric hospitals, including Napa State Hospital.

In their March 8 letter, the state legislators told Department of Mental Health Director Cliff Allenby that “massive layoffs” didn’t make sense at a time when the state hospitals have serious safety problems.

Read full story in the Napa Valley Register
View Select Committee Letter to Allenby 3-8-12

AB 1655 Takes Aim at Wasteful Contracting

March 9, 2012

Dickinson, a former state lawyer whose Sacramento district has a higher concentration of state employees than any other Assembly member’s, argues that his bill would take “full advantage of employee expertise.”

State employees cost less and perform at a higher level, Dickinson said, compared with contractors who charge more for their services.

“My experience is that employees of an organization tend to be more dedicated than contractors,” Dickinson said. “Plus, management has more direct and discreet control (over state employees).”

Read full story in The Sacramento Bee.

UAPD President Gives Testimony Against Contracting

February 22, 2012

On February 21, 2012 the Assembly Budget Subcommittee on State Administration held an oversight hearing on the contracting out of State work.  UAPD President Dr. Stuart Bussey presented testimony about why contracting out of doctor services presents a problem for all Californians.  Dr. Bussey presented evidence that:

Even with full benefits and a State retirement contribution of 18% there is still a monetary savings of about 29% that comes from using civil servant doctors.

He also argued that:

Another troubling State liability regarding contracted employees is that they could demand to be granted retroactive service credits, benefits, even pensions, if they were to seek legal reclassification as civil service employees.

Dr. Bussey presented a list of solutions that included passing the UAPD-sponsored Public Employee Bill of Rights (AB 1655), directing more effort towards recruitment and retention of civil servants, and limiting the circumstances and time period for which a contractor can be used.

Download Dr. Bussey’s Testimony (pdf)

UAPD Sponsors Public Employee Bill of Rights

February 13, 2012

“One of the goals for the Public Employee’s Bill of Rights is to mirror the government’s guarantee for a swift trial to its citizens. Another important goal of the bill is to reduce contracting out and achieve the most efficient business model for our cash-strapped state,” says Dr. Stuart Bussey, MD, JD, President of the Union of American Physicians and Dentists.

Read Press Release: Bill of Rights by Assemblymember Roger Dickinson (D-Sacramento)

Read article in Sacramento Bee

Two Pension-Attacking Initiatives Collapse

February 9, 2012

Beleaguered by fundraising problems and questions about the viability of its proposals, California Pension Reform shut down its efforts.

Read full article at  Group suspends California public pension reform ballot effort -  | Sacramento Bee.

Editorial: Pension Ballot Measures Don’t Delivier Savings

February 1, 2012

If lower wages and reduced pensions make it difficult for the public sector to attract these highly skilled workers, the state will either have to contract out this vital work or cede it to the private sector where wages (and thus costs) are higher. Contracting out is particularly expensive.

Read full article at Pension-cutting plans on ballot promise savings but don’t deliver  | Sacramento Bee.

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