Unions Put Major Muscle Behind Their Capitol Agenda in California

Labor News

The California Nurses Association organized demonstrations at this month’s state Democratic Party convention to push for adoption of a single-payer health care system. Senate Bill 562, the union-backed bill for such a system, is now pending in the state Senate. Randall Benton rbenton@sacbee.com

Reprinted from The Sacramento Bee by Dan Walters on May 31, 2017.

… While every legislative session includes a raft of union-sponsored bills, the 2017 session is seeing a particularly strong push by union leaders. They evidently hope that Democratic gains in the 2016 election, coupled with what appears to be a more benevolent attitude by Governor Jerry Brown in the last two years of his governorship, will bear fruit. …

By far the year’s most dramatic union campaign is the California Nurses Association-supported legislation (Senate Bill 562 by Senator Ricardo Lara, D-Bell Gardens) to create a single-payer health care system costing an estimated $400 billion a year.

The nurses say it would improve health care by eliminating provider profits, but it also would give the union opportunities to use its political clout in a state-operated health care system.

A clue to that goal is bill by Lara (SB 349), sponsored by the United Nurses Association of California and other health care unions, to set state-mandated staffing requirements for dialysis clinics that, the clinics say, will drive up costs of treatment.

Sacramento Bee 5/31

About Jeffrey Burman 3197 Articles
Jeff Burman represents assistant editors on the Guild’s Board of Directors. He can be reached at jeffrey.s.burman.57@gmail.com.

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