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Parties Far Apart on Economics; Some Progress on Safety and Dispute Resolution

DAILY BARGAINING UPDATE | AUGUST 31, 2021 The first of three days of national bargaining started today with both labor and management accepting the initial recommendations presented by the Patient & Worker Safety and Problem and Dispute Resolution subcommittees. However, the tone quickly changed when the issue of economics came up. The Alliance reviewed our proposals for good wages and benefit improvements, while KP is stuck on two-tier wages and 1% annual raises.

Alliance Executive Director Hal Ruddick reviewed the Alliance’s comprehensive economic proposal that includes good wage increases, increased tuition reimbursements and student loan repayment assistance, and raising standards in areas with lower benefits. KP negotiators have ignored the Alliance’s proposals and made only two proposals of their own: a 1% annual wage increase, and lower two-tier wages for new hires - even in the face of the staffing crisis.

“We’re at a crossroads in our 24 years of partnership,” Ruddick said. “We will not agree to this destructive two-tier proposal, and we’ve made that clear in every conversation. If KP continues on this concessionary path, it will lead to a multi-year labor war with all of KP’s unions.”

“Your problem isn’t our wages,” UNITE HERE president Eric Gill told Kaiser. “Your problem is your numbers - your wage study numbers. We don’t believe them.” KP has not demonstrated a credible rationale for lower wages and two-tier.

The first session of national bargaining will resume Wednesday morning where recommendations from the Staffing, Backfill, and Travelers and the Racial Justice subcommittees are expected. Each subcommittee is tasked with presenting all joint recommendations by Thursday, September 2, 2021.

ACCEPTED SUBCOMMITTEE RECOMMENDATIONS

The Patient and Worker Safety subcommittee focused on broadening the concept of “health” to include not only physical health but also mental health and psychological safety. They presented four joint recommendations: (1) update the current section on Total Health to include psychological safety and mental health, (2) create a national committee to address psychological safety, Just Culture; and improve integration/collaboration across KP, (3) update the NA with the KP Well-Being Model that includes a holistic view of health, and (4) retain the 24/7 EAP line that’s temporary.

The Problem and Dispute Resolution subcommittee aims to clarify and improve partnership dispute resolution processes. The subcommittee’s joint recommendations included: (1) develop an easy-to-read accessible guide showing the purpose and pathway of the dispute resolution process, (2) develop an annual refresher for UBT’s and LMP Councils on how to use interest-based (IB) conversations in everyday interactions and problem solving, (3) provide just-in-time training for Issue Resolution participants, if needed, (4) develop internal capacity to train and facilitate Issue Resolution (IR), (5) provide targeted information and education to clarify how the IR process should be used.

PETITION ALERT: TELL KP TO INVEST IN PATIENT CARE AND HEALTHCARE WORKERS



UNION SOLIDARITY TUESDAYS Every Tuesday, wear your union gear to work to show KP we are united to protect our patients and each other. (Mondays if you’re in Colorado). Take a photo wearing your union gear and post it on social media with the hashtag #BestJobsBestCare. Remember to tag KP @KPThrive and your local union.


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