Local 5 hits Kaiser with second job action

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Local 5 is staging a second job action against Kaiser Permanente Hawaii to protest the March 16 closure of the Urgent Care Center at the Honolulu clinic.

The hotel union, which represents almost 2,000 Kaiser employees in Hawaii, said its members felt closing the walk-in clinic, ending 11 jobs, caused an increase in work load and a decline in patient care quality.

Kaiser executives said at the time that the clinic was underused and those who did use it could be served by the many doctors, nurses and other personnel working upstairs at the same clinic. Nurses whose assignments were phased out were offered a choice of severance or reassignment and the majority chose the latter.

During the first job action in April, the protest was limited to select volunteers so as not to disrupt normal operations. Many volunteers were non-Kaiser Permanente employees who were bussed in to help demonstrate.

"This volunteer stop-work action is endorsed and supported by the union. Local 5 has asked the majority of our members at Kaiser to report to work as usual today," the union said in April. "It is our expectation that they will do so. The hospital and clinics will be open. Patients with appointments do not need to cancel or reschedule."

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