Congratulations to our members at the new Westside Medical Center on completing the probationary period and becoming full employees and having full union protection!More
As of March 3, chief petitioners for Initiative Petitions 1 and 9—anti-worker initiatives—as well as the chief petitioners for several revenue-raising initiatives, have formally withdrawn their proposed initiatives, keeping them off the 2014 ballot.
Since last year, the Governor has talked about wanting to keep these initiatives off the ballot so that he could continue his revenue reform efforts. Withdrawing them clears the way for his process to continue.
The best news out of this deal is that Oregon workers will not have to face a major, multi-million dollar attack from out-of-state corporate interests. While the Koch Brothers and ALEC are moving these anti-worker laws around the country, we won’t have to face that threat this year.
For the last few months, members have spent countless hours preparing to fight the anti-worker measures and the hard work has been paying off. And while this recent news is a sigh of relief, we must continue to build on these efforts, for we will surely see similar attacks in the future.
Congratulations to the Portland Association of Teachers and the Portland Public Schools Board for reaching a tentative agreement. The strike that was to begin on Thursday, February 20, has been averted, pending the outcome of a vote of the union members. For more information, visit the association website, here.
Over the last few months, we have been learning about many member retirees who have had trouble with their retirement benefits after Kaiser switched to using Mercer as the plan administrator. We have been working closely with Kaiser, our own attorneys, and ERISA attorney Greg Hartman to work through these problems and help our members receive their full and timely retirement benefits.
Working with our attorneys, we have developed a letter that outines your key rights and responsibilities as participants in Kaiser's pension plan. We encourage you to read the letter in its entirety. It can be found by clicking this link.
Since we began working with Kaiser and the attorneys, we have seen much improvement. The system isn't fixed yet, but we're getting closer. We have seen a strong reduction in the amount of time our members have had to wait for calculations and payouts, as well as a reduction in turnaround time overall. Mercer and Kaiser are both taking this issue very seriously, and are working diligently with us to correct the problems.
If you do not have a copy of your retirement plan document, you can request one from the Kaiser Permanente Retirement Center (KPRC) at 1-866-627-2826, or online at myretirement.kp.org. Click My Pension Plan.
The above retirement website contains all of the plan information, a calculator, and contact information. If you have any questions or a dispute about your calculations, please raise them and let Mercer know. Double-check your plan documents and be sure you are receiving the proper amounts.
To real the full letter outlining your rights and responsibilities, click here.
In her latest column appearing in the New York Times, AFT President Randi Weingarten urges lawmakers to strengthen the rungs on America's ladder of opportunity.
In her latest column appearing in the New York Times, AFT President Randi Weingarten writes about what poverty in America looks like today, a half-century after President Lyndon B. Johnson, in conjunction with civil rights, religious and labor leaders, commenced the war on poverty.
Flu season is here, and as healthcare professionals we are at much greater risk than the general population! Not just of contracting the virus from our sick patients, but also of spreading it to those who might be weaker or have compromised immune systems. Keep yourself healthy and protect others by practicing prevention.