OAKLAND, Calif. — Mental health clinicians — members of the National Union of Healthcare Workers — organized picket lines at 33 Kaiser facilities across the state during their five-day strike that ended Dec. 14.
They were joined at the Oakland Medical Center and many other picket sites by registered nurses, members of the California Nurses Association, who went on a sympathy strike. “Standing in SOLIDARITY with our sisters and brothers” read the nurses’ picket signs.
The clinicians are demanding more staff and better patient care.
“We must serve patients’ needs, not Kaiser’s greed,” Michele Anders told the Militant on the picket line. A veteran of many strikes during her 30 years as a nurse and California Nurses Association member, Anders said, “Mental health services are very important.” She added, “I’m out here to back their fight.”
National Union of Healthcare Workers member Grace Soghomonian wore a yellow safety vest to the picket line here to express solidarity with the massive “yellow vest” movement of workers and rural poor in France.
“I’m a little militant,” she said. “The issues the yellow vests are confronting in France are very similar to the corporate and government greed we face.”