Does anyone have experience, good or bad, with SEIU? If so, please give me some information.

They are trying to unionize our facility, and I don't know much about them.



415 Posts

I'm openning another can of worms, I know...so, I'll start by saying I don't like unions, wont work for a hospital that has one, and don't "look for the union label".

That being said....SEIU is a union pure and simple. It doesn't have all the "professional trapings" of ANA or any state nurses' association (here in CA we have the CNA)...professionalism is not part of their dictionary, so you wont be mislead by what they aren't (like those unions that call themselves professional organizations). They ususally start out by trying to unionize the housekeeping or food service employees, then move on to nurse aides, LVN's, etc. "Service Union" is in their name and that's what they are.

Only good thing I can say about them is that they have great colors -- purple and gold, so when they try to organize your hospital it looks like the Lakers are in town.


2,099 Posts

Specializes in Corrections, Psych, Med-Surg. Has 15 years experience.

Inexperienced, unskilled, lazy bureaucrats who will NOT stand up for nurses (except now and thenfor higher wages). Dealing with them was as bad as dealing with any government bureaucracy.

I have been equally impressed with CNA.

Both are company unions, afraid of rocking the boat, and content to mind their own daily bureaucracies and to stick their necks out as little as possible.

Go for the Teamsters. At least they are able to kick some butt from time to time.

nimbex, RN

387 Posts

Not familiar with that one, only the AFL CIO,

UNIONS? My experience is that if your hospital is filled with poorly motivated, troubled and even unstable employees it will guarentee their job and make it impossible to fire them.

you pay for someone to meet with your manager to tell of your complaint.......

about summarizes it


415 Posts

Teamsters? Great idea sjoe....aren't they still looking for Hoffa and the pension fund!


464 Posts

Specializes in Women's health & post-partum. Has 38 years experience.

Well, you can fire a union employee, but it takes awhile. Verbal warning, written warning, work plan for at least 90 days, monthly (or oftener) evaluations; then decrease in pay, demotion or termination. A former supervisor I know says "If you do it right, you can fire God!"

The work plan has to be measurable, ie failure to perform duties, bad language, not getting along with others, complaints from clients or patients, etc; it can't be for a "bad attitude" or the like.

Gross insubordination, fighting, physical abuse can speed up the process, if you have proof. Of course the individual receives a copy of the work plan and of each of the evaluations.

We went through this with a former HN who did not follow all the steps, the fired employee sued and won enough to be able to return to school for a masters'. He's now a nurse entrepreneur. (I never thought she had grounds anyway!)

The only real difference I've noticed having switched from a union to a non-union hospital is that as a non-union employee I can be required to work mandatory overtime. Sucks, yeah, but at least I won't be paying $400/ year in union dues for nothing....

BadBird, BSN, RN

1,126 Posts

Specializes in Critical Care.

SEIU is bad news, Teamsters is the way to go, Good luck!!!!!!!


250 Posts

i have had no dealings with any other unions other than seiu. i feel that a union is an asset to the employee. i think that without the union our work conditions would be worse. however, i think there are other unions that are stronger. i'm happy that noone can be fired without going through a process. if someone is really screwing up they can be terminated. but, if someone makes a minor mistake, or two, or three even,they will get a chance. they have some protection. at a non union place you can be terminated without any reason. not so at a union place. i wish we had the power that other unions do. how come engineering get double time for weekends and holidays? nursing gets time and a half for holidays and nothing extra for weekends. i don't understand how some unions get such better deals but i would not want to work without a union. they may not get everything we want but we would have a lot less without them.

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