UPMC facing charges of unfair labor again

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SEIU Healthcare Pennsylvania says it will file a new set of unfair labor practice allegations against UPMC with the National Labor Relations Board, accusing the Pittsburgh health giant of retaliating against staff members who support union organizing efforts.

In February, UPMC reached a settlement with NLRB on earlier complaints, agreeing to rescind policies that prevented employees from discussing a possible union in non-patient care areas and to have UPMC managers and supervisors undergo labor law compliance training.

Since then, according to SEIU, "UPMC has unlawfully disciplined or threatened to discipline over 17 employees simply because they demonstrated support of the union," including firing two employees because of their union activities. The union says one of the two employees had been fired previously but was reinstated as part of the earlier settlement with NLRB.

The health system rejected the charges.

In a statement issued late Wednesday, spokeswoman Gloria Kreps said, "UPMC, its hospitals and its managers are in compliance with the terms of the settlement and, will vigorously contest the new allegations when filed with the NLRB. We continue to focus our full attention on delivering the excellent patient care for which we are known, in spite of this ongoing SEIU campaign."

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Steve Twedt: stwedt@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1963.


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