Despite its claims to help working Americans, SEIU’s selfish and destructive tactics frequently hurt the very people the union should help.
During a campaign to organize employees in Hartford, Connecticut, SEIU turned to its patented trouble-making campaign to harass the employer into caving to union demands. The effect on employees was devastating. Workers responded by protesting the union, and said:
- “You’re not interested in us. You don’t care about us because, if you did, you wouldn’t tell people to stop coming here. We need to make a living. Let us work!”
- “No one wants you here! You’re not ever going to get voted in here. You’ve hurt us too much. Why would we have someone represent us who’s kicked us.”
- “You’re basically strangling our income. Why would we want to join a union that wants to choke us into submission to let you in? You’re not the union I want.”
The willingness to injure employees to increase SEIU’s revenue became crystal clear in April 2007. The San Francisco Weekly uncovered a shady deal SEIU officials made with California nursing home operators. The deal: in exchange for lobbying the state for more funds, the employers would let SEIU unionize employees while not educating them on the union’s inflated promises. But according to the Weekly it was:
… a sweetheart deal between the SEIU and California nursing home companies that impair, rather than empower, workers and patients, while inflating dues-paying ranks.
The deal, the Weekly added, “involved trading away workers’ free-speech rights, selling out their ability to improve working conditions, and relinquishing their capability to improve pay and benefits, in order to expand the SEIU’s and Stern’s own power.”
Is it any wonder a California SEIU member said “To them, we are a huge ATM machine”? That member’s union – SEIU Local 1000 – found itself $6.7 million in debt after spending on issues such as an attempt to block a state initiative that would have required unions to obtain written consent from members before using dues money for political causes.Union bosses take personal advantage of their power over members. According to reports from the Detroit News, SEIU Local 79 head Willie Hampton “saw his pay jump 25 percent from 2002 to 2006” while during “that same time, his union has lost 30 percent of its membership.”