August 01, 2005

Group Health Coughs Up Back Pay

Why we need the Department of Labor, from the Seattle P-I:

Group Health Cooperative will pay $1.64 million in overtime back pay to nearly 1,000 employees under an agreement with the U.S. Department of Labor filed in federal court yesterday.

The agreement settles a long-running federal review of the pay practices of the Seattle-based health-maintenance organization, including allegations that employees were expected to pad their days with unpaid overtime before and after regular shifts. ...

Later in the article, it's noted that the SEIU, which represents Group Health workers had previously negotiated a separate settlement with the healthcare organization to compensate employees who'd been made to work through their breaks.

And yet, so many people continue to think that unions and labor laws are obsolete. Clearly, those people don't remember their last tyrannical boss. Employers are the same as they've always been, and many of them would try to get away with the things they've always tried to get away with when no one was paying attention. If all the US' labor laws were repealed tomorrow, the sweatshops would be up and running in broad daylight the day after that.

Posted by natasha at August 1, 2005 05:19 PM | Labor | Technorati links |

And while we're at it, how pathetic is that this employer is supposedly a "co-op", but the members, who are also the patients, can't even get the Board to treat the nurses fairly. Wonder how the members feel when they're in the hospital bed and the overworked nurses have to put some flashing call-lights at the bottom of the list?

Posted by: serial catowner at August 2, 2005 11:42 AM

Did anyone wonder why only 939 employees out of 10,000 were compensated? Was the DOL told how they presented this to the employees? More than likley most of us that work overtime due to trying to get the job done, did not have the time to take the 30 minute "survey" we were asked to take "for data gathering purposes" we don't have the time. Does anyone know the amount of surveys a GHC employee receives? Most of which management or supervisors will hound employees until done. Why were we not "hounded" about this one..? I will tell you why, they wanted to do the very minimum to keep with the letter of the "law" but did not put any emphasis on the importance nor did they disclose the reason except, "data gathering purposes".

Knowing they were going to have to compensate, they presented the survey in such a manner that not everyone would complete it. The less response, the less money? Hmmmmmm

This is beyond an outrage!!!!

Posted by: Anonymous at August 23, 2005 10:08 PM