Synopses & Reviews
A clear analysis of tactics and politics, this thorough account examines the dispute between the United Healthcare Workers (UHW) union in California and its parent” organization the Service Employees International Union (SEIU)one of the most important labor conflicts in the United States today. It explores how the UHW rank and file took umbrage with the SEIUs rejection of traditional labor values of union democracy and class struggle and their tactics of wheeling and dealing with top management and politicians. The resulting rift and retaliation from SEIU leadership culminated in the UHW membership being forced to break out and form a brand new union, the National Union of Healthcare Workers (NUHW). Timed to coincide with elections in California, this detailed history calls for a reexamination of the ideological and structural underpinnings of todays labor movement and illustrates how a seemingly local conflict speaks to the rights of laborers everywhere to control their own fates.
About the Author
Cal Winslow is a historian, the coauthor of Albion's Fatal Tree, and the coeditor of Rebel Rank and File, Labor Militancy in the Long Seventies. He is a fellow in environmental politics at University of CaliforniaBerkeley and the director of the Mendocino Institute. He lives in Mendocino, California.