Topics: News, Press

Assembly Votes to Ensure Access to Healthcare for Workers Exercising Their Right to Strike

Sacramento, CA – The Service Employees International Union (SEIU) California, United Food and Commercial Workers Western States Council and the California Labor Federation today applauded the California State Assembly’s approval of AB 2530 (Wood), which provides timely and affordable access to Covered California insurance for workers who lose health benefits due to a labor dispute.

“Unscrupulous employers will often weaponize workers’ benefits to force them to take less than fair deals on the job, knowing that workers and their families cannot live without healthcare,” said Joseph Bryant, President of SEIU Local 1021 and Executive Board Member of SEIU California. “Workers exercising their right to strike, or workers locked out of the job, shouldn’t live in fear of losing their family’s health insurance when they stand up for themselves and their coworkers during contract negotiations. AB 2530 will ensure workers trying to better their livelihoods through a strike won’t have to weigh keeping their family healthy with earning more on the job. We’re glad the Assembly supported this key public health and worker rights measure.”

“Employers maliciously hold health coverage and other benefits over the heads of workers exercising their labor rights, aiming for workers to take less than what they deserve so their families can get the medicine or care they need to stay healthy,” said Maribel McKinze, Recorder/Political & Organizing Director, UFCW Local 135. “Thousands of our members across the state voted to strike against their grocery store employers earlier this year because they knew they had to stand up for the contract they deserved. AB 2530 will give workers peace of mind and prevent employers from interfering with workers’ rights to strike and obtain the strongest contracts possible. We’re glad the Assembly voted to support this important bill and urge the Senate to do the same.”

“No worker should be denied affordable health care coverage,” said California Labor Federation Executive Secretary-Treasurer Art Pulaski. “By passing AB 2530 today, the Assembly moved a critical protection for striking workers forward. We urge the Senate to follow suit so that no worker on strike loses the health care her family relies upon.”

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May 23, 2022

Contact: Jenna Thompson, 949.246.1620, [email protected]