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Ohio Governor Signs Order Granting Collecting Bargaining Rights to Independent Home Care Workers

We told your earlier about how the Service Employees International Union has aimed their sights on organizing home health care workers. Here’s another example:

COLUMBUS — Gov. Ted Strickland signed an executive order Tuesday that gives collective bargaining rights to about 7,000 independent home health care workers and said he’ll soon sign a similar order for child care workers.

Senate President Bill Harris, R-Ashland, called it a huge step backward. He said, “Collective bargaining will drive up costs and decrease the state’s buying power without any tangible proof that quality will be improved for those served.”

Before the close of business, a union — SEIU 1199 — had requested the list of health care workers from the state and announced plans to organize them.

“We are the health care workers’ union. We absolutely understand the issues of the long-term care workers,” said Service Employees International Union 1199 Executive Vice President Becky Williams. “We have talked to this group for some time.”

The order covers about 2,000 nurses and 5,000 direct care aides who are independent contractors not employed by the state or home health care agencies. They provide services to elderly or disabled patients and are paid through Medicaid, the state and federally funded health care program.

What do you think about his issue? Post your comments below.

If you have other examples of union activity in home care, let us know.

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