May 2010

In Sacramento, Members Turn Out in Force Against Budget Cuts

(Sacramento) — Hundreds of SEIU-ULTCW members today joined others at Disability Action Day to speak out against the Governor’s proposed $750 million cuts to the In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) program.  Held on the steps of the Capitol, the daylong event, which drew thousands of disabled Californians, their caregivers, and advocates, is intended to put a human face on the in-home care program and echo the importance of this cost-effective, lifeline service.  

ULTCW Secretary Treasurer Ana Duarte addressed the crowd, saying,”It may be easy for the Governor to sit in his office and take his red pen to the state budget, but it’s time that he and other elected officials understand that there are hundreds of thousands of Californians whose lives would be placed in danger if these short-sighted cuts were to take place.”

The Governor’s May Revise recommends eliminating nearly half of the state’s funding for the IHSS program — cuts that would impact the delivery of care to over 200,000 low-income seniors and disabled Californians and would eliminate roughly 130,000 caregiver jobs.

Sacramento Disability Action Day

Sacramento Disability Action Day 02

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Assembly Budget Panel Rejects Devastating Cuts to Home Care

(SACRAMENTO)  — The Service Employees International Union (SEIU) California released the following statement from President Bill A. Lloyd after the Assembly’s Budget Subcommittee #1 on Health and Human Services rejected the latest budget proposal to eliminate more than half the funding for the state’s cost-effective In-Home Supportive Service (IHSS) program:

“We commend the Assemblymembers who rejected the latest budget proposal to eliminate home care for half or more of the California seniors and people with disabilities who rely on it. This is the kind of leadership California’s working people need to help us rebuild our state.  Today’s vote demonstrates how an open and transparent budget process will produce a budget that better reflects Californians’ values.

“Home care is a lifeline for 450,000 seniors and people with disabilities, saves money for the state, and is an essential and irreplaceable part of California’s system of caring for the elderly and disabled.

“People relying on home care now have no other place to go and no back-up plan. They will not simply vanish into thin air.

“Today’s vote is also a boost for California’s economy.  The latest budget proposal to cut IHSS funding in half would put at least 175,000 caregivers out of work and send our unemployment rate soaring. This is the last thing our fragile state economy needs right now, and it would hurt struggling communities the most.”

# # #

SEIU California is a coalition of over 700,000 janitors, social workers, security officers, home care workers, school and university employees, healthcare workers, and city, county and state employees represented by SEIU local unions throughout California. We come together to build a better California by fighting to pass policies and elect candidates that benefit working families and advance the issues we care about: affordable healthcare, good wages, retirement security for all, a healthy environment, good schools and universities, and stronger communities. We believe that by working together we can build a California where working families can thrive again.

Contacts: Mary Gutierrez, 213-276-3384

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SEIU ULTCW says Gov’s Proposal “Morally Wrong, Economically UnHealthy”

(May 14, 2010 – LOS ANGELES)  Below is a statement released today by Laphonza Butler, President of SEIU ULTCW, in response to Governor Schwarzenegger’s May Revise and his proposed $750 million in cuts to In-Home Supportive Services:

Contact: Scott Mann (323) 333-4850

 “Today, in his May Revise, Governor Schwarzenegger continued his egregious and inhumane assault on California’s low-income seniors, people with disabilities, and those who care for them by pushing for vicious cuts to the state’s vital, cost-effective in-home care program.

“For the last few months, we, along with partners and supporters in communities across the state, have shown the incredible value that the in-home care program provides to California taxpayers and those it serves.  Policy reports from UC Berkeley, Beacon Economics, and others have repeatedly revealed the negative impact such a flawed policy of cuts would have on the state’s economy and on the lives California’s most vulnerable residents.

“While the Governor’s revision involves cuts less than originally proposed, it is far short from being fiscally sound, acceptable or humane.  When you’re talking about the service of last resort, the final safety net, any cut will place lives at risk.

“As outlined in his May Revise, the Governor’s proposed $750 million in cuts to the In-Home Supportive Services program (IHSS) would have a profound and devastating impact on California’s economy, unemployment rate and the lives of nearly 350,000 California seniors, disabled residents and those who provide them with daily care.

“Governor Schwarzenegger’s desire to sever this lifeline service means over 200,000 low-income seniors and people with disabilities would lose the only care available that allows them to live safely at home  — forcing many to turn to costly taxpayer funded institutions, more than 140,000 caregivers would lose their jobs, and California would forfeit more than a billion dollars in matching federal dollars at a time when every dollar is needed (for every $1.00 the state spends on in-home care, California receives nearly $2.00 in federal funding).

“Simply put, the Governor’s cuts to in-home care don’t add up.   Cutting a program that saves taxpayers money, brings much needed federal dollars into the state economy, provides California jobs, and protects our most frail residents doesn’t help California’s fiscal crisis, it will only make it worse.

“The members of SEIU ULTCW stand united to fight these cuts in order to ensure that our most fragile residents continue to receive the necessary care they need to live safely at home.

“Californians want to keep their loved ones Healthy at Home. The Governor’s Revised Budget does not do that.”

###

SEIU ULTCW (United Long Term Care Workers’ Union) represents 179,000 long term caregivers (In-Home Care Providers and Nursing Home Workers) throughout 16 California counties.  For more information on SEIU ULTCW, please visit www.SEIU-ULTCW.org.

The Los Angeles County Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO is the chartered Central Labor Council (CLC) of the AFL-CIO in Los Angeles County and is the second largest in the country, representing over 350 unions and over 800,000 workers. Its mission is to promote a voice for workers standing up against poverty by organizing themselves to join a union, through active participation in the political process, by electing pro-union and pro-worker officials and to advance public policies that support workers and their families. As the coordinating center for labor’s political activity, the Federation believes that in educating and mobilizing workers to be politically active they can create and sustain healthy communities, and FIGHT FOR GOOD JOBS that REBUILD THE LOS ANGELES MIDDLE CLASS. Visit the Federation at www.launionaflcio.org

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ULTCW says Gov’s Proposal “Morally Wrong, Economically UnHealthy”

Below is a statement released today by Laphonza Butler, President of SEIU ULTCW, in response to Governor Schwarzenegger’s May Revise and his proposed $750 million in cuts to In-Home Supportive Services:

“Today, in his May Revise, Governor Schwarzenegger continued his egregious and inhumane assault on California’s low-income seniors, people with disabilities, and those who care for them by pushing for vicious cuts to the state’s vital, cost-effective in-home care program.

“For the last few months, we, along with partners and supporters in communities across the state, have shown the incredible value that the in-home care program provides to California taxpayers and those it serves.  Policy reports from UC Berkeley, Beacon Economics, and others have repeatedly revealed the negative impact such a flawed policy of cuts would have on the state’s economy and on the lives California’s most vulnerable residents.

“While the Governor’s revision involves cuts less than originally proposed, it is far short from being fiscally sound, acceptable or humane.  When you’re talking about the service of last resort, the final safety net, any cut will place lives at risk.

“As outlined in his May Revise, the Governor’s proposed $750 million in cuts to the In-Home Supportive Services program (IHSS) would have a profound and devastating impact on California’s economy, unemployment rate and the lives of nearly 350,000 California seniors, disabled residents and those who provide them with daily care.

“Governor Schwarzenegger’s desire to sever this lifeline service means over 200,000 low-income seniors and people with disabilities would lose the only care available that allows them to live safely at home  — forcing many to turn to costly taxpayer funded institutions, more than 140,000 caregivers would lose their jobs, and California would forfeit more than a billion dollars in matching federal dollars at a time when every dollar is needed (for every $1.00 the state spends on in-home care, California receives nearly $2.00 in federal funding).

“Simply put, the Governor’s cuts to in-home care don’t add up.   Cutting a program that saves taxpayers money, brings much needed federal dollars into the state economy, provides California jobs, and protects our most frail residents doesn’t help California’s fiscal crisis, it will only make it worse.

“The members of SEIU ULTCW stand united to fight these cuts in order to ensure that our most fragile residents continue to receive the necessary care they need to live safely at home.

“Californians want to keep their loved ones Healthy at Home. The Governor’s Revised Budget does not do that.”

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Members Help Establish Wisconsin SEIU Union

ULTCW members played an instrumental role in helping secure the
creation of a massive SEIU union for home care providers in Wisconsin last week.

In
one of the state’s largest union elections in decades, 5,500 Wisconsin
home care providers overwhelmingly voted ‘yes’ on May 6th to unite in SEIU Healthcare Wisconsin.

The final vote was 1249 ‘yes’ to 705 ‘no’. The mail-in ballots were tallied by the Wisconsin Employment Relations Commission staff. Wisconsin home care providers join home care workers in more than 10 other states  — including 12,000 Missouri home care workers who announced last week they had joined with SEIU to improve the quality of care available to consumers.

17 ULTCW member-organizers spent several of the last few
weeks in the state, engaging in organizing activities and get-out-the
vote efforts. Their efforts resulted in:

  • 466 Mailed ‘Yes’ Ballots
  • 200 Cope Cards
  • 918 Conversations regarding the union

ULTCW
member-organizers got high praise for their work. “You all had a
strategy to the way you approached these visits,” said Matthew
Schumwinger, a Wisconsin SEIU campaign lead. “So you all earned this
pancake breakfast for your hard and incredible work.”

ULTCW had
three member organizers take on lead roles during this campaign: Denise
Kornegay, Maia Rivera, and Lorijon Brown.  They managed groups of four
or more member-organizers, and their responsibilities included
training, debriefing, organizing turf, and reporting back on the day’s
work. 

They served as mentors to their group and followed up on areas
that needed development and tapped into other member organizers to
share their skills. Two ULTCW member organizers, Leonard Camarena and
Lorijon Brown, stayed behind in Wisconsin until the May 6th
ballot-counting.

A big thanks to all the ULTCW members
whose work made such a difference, and another big congratulations to
our brothers and sisters in Wisconsin who voted to unite in SEIU!

Wisc04

(ULTCW member-organizer Shanisha Robinson had
this Wisconsin homecare worker mail out her ballot to unite all
homecare workers in the state of Wisconsin during her house visit.)

Wisc 05

(ULTCW members in Wisconsin: Maggie
Griffin, Michele Reed, Irene Cruz, Yolanda Richard, Maria Rinallo,
Lorijon Brown, Elizabeth Guerena, Loquilla Jackson, Shanisha Robinson,
Leonard Camarena, Carla Eastman, Frederick Lee, Denise Kornegay, Maia
Rivera, Brenda Steele, Antaram Agatelova)

Wisonsin President 480

(Victorious Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Healthcare
Wisconsin and home care representatives celebrate outside the Wisconsin
State Capitol in Madison, Wis, on May 6, 2010. Pictured at center is
SEIU president Dian Palmer.)

Wisconsin capitol 480

(Victorious Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Healthcare
Wisconsin and home care representatives celebrate outside the Wisconsin
State Capitol in Madison, WI)

Wisconsin ballot 480

(Wisconsin Employment Relations
Commission staff tally mail-in ballets made by Wisconsin home care
workers voting whether or not to join Service Employees International
Union (SEIU) Healthcare Wisconsin. The movement passed, 1249 yes to 705
no votes.)

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ULTCW Art Gallery – Opening Reception

Heartbeat of Cali 250You’re invited!

Come on out for the opening reception of “The Heartbeat of
California,” an exhibit featuring works reflecting the themes of
California, Community, Home, Mutual Dependence, Progress and Unity.

Opening and reception with artists. Food and DJ.

Exhibit curated with big heart by Yosi Sergant. Card artwork by Tes One, ‘One Love. Sponsored by SEIU-ULTCW.

You and I – WE – are the heartbeat of this Golden State.

May 11, 2010 | 5-7pm
SEIU-ULTCW
2515 Beverly Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90057
(map)

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