Wednesday, May 17, 2023
► From the News Tribune — Good Sam nurses hold vote of no confidence in MultiCare CEO after staffing concerns — Nurses at MultiCare Good Samaritan Hospital in Puyallup are holding a vote of no confidence in MultiCare’s CEO amid staffing concerns, the Washington State Nurses Association said Tuesday. The vote tally will be out by 9 p.m. Tuesday. A WSNA news release reads:
“The main issues for the 750 nurses represented by the Washington State Nurses Association are staffing and dedicated break nurses. Nurses are concerned about handling the increasing patient load and still providing quality patient care.”
► From Cascadia Daily News — ‘Devastated’: PeaceHealth makes cuts to palliative care — PeaceHealth in Whatcom County is ending comprehensive outpatient palliative care on May 26, reducing staff to one nurse and one social worker for in-home care of seriously ill patients. Criticism of the decision has been harsh, with some patients and observers saying it goes directly against PeaceHealth’s mission.
► From the Seattle Times — The story behind this Alaska Air 737’s stunningly Northwest paint job — Alaska Airlines’ latest custom-painted Boeing 737 will, in a first for the airline, feature artwork from an Indigenous artist working in a style with deep Northwest roots. Unveiled last week, the 737-800 features a swirling salmon design by artist Crystal Kaakeeyáa Rose Demientieff Worl done in the Northwest Coast formline style. The plane carries the name Xáat Kwáani, meaning salmon people in the language of the Tlingit of southeast Alaska.
► From the Yakima H-R — Workers prepare for record-setting heat predicted Friday, Saturday in Yakima Valley — High temperatures are expected to exceed heat records as a string of 90-degree plus weather days are predicted in the Yakima Valley. Those working outdoors, along with their supervisors, will need to take precautions and follow the state’s excessive heat rules where applicable.
The Stand (March 27) — L&I proposes permanent rules to protect workers from heat
► From KUOW — Gov. Inslee signs new drug possession law after special legislative session — The Legislature approved a bipartisan compromise Tuesday to address drug possession and treatment during a one-day special session.
► From the News Tribune — Puget Sound won’t build a new airport anytime soon. For Pierce County, that’s a win (by Matt Driscoll) — Local anger and grassroots organizing helped to stiff-arm an effort that could have decimated rural Pierce County forever.
► From the Tri-City Herald — Tiffany Smiley PAC for ‘political outsiders’ actually pays campaign debt first — The Republican’s unsuccessful bid to unseat U.S. Sen. Patty Murray left her campaign more than $1 million in debt.
► From the AP — Debt limit progress as Biden, McCarthy name top negotiators to avert national default — Debt-limit talks shifted into an encouraging new phase Tuesday as President Joe Biden and House Speaker Kevin McCarthy named top emissaries to negotiate a deal to avert an unprecedented national default. Biden cut short an upcoming overseas trip in hopes of closing an agreement before a June 1 deadline.
► From The Hill — McCarthy says work requirements a ‘red line’ in debt ceiling talks — Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) on Tuesday said work requirements for public assistance programs are a nonnegotiable in debt ceiling talks, laying out one of his first hard stances ahead of an afternoon meeting with President Biden and other top congressional leaders.
EDITOR’S NOTE — On a 217-215 vote, Washington Republican Reps. Cathy McMorris Rodgers and Dan Newhouse both voted to approve the “Limit, Save, Grow Act,” which imposes these work requirements and is the basis for the GOP’s debt limit threat to crash the U.S. economy. If either one of them had voted “no,” it would have failed to pass.
The Stand (May 5) — How Republican spending cuts will hurt Washington state
► From the NY Times — How to use the debt ceiling to inflict cruelty on the poor (by David Firestone) — None of Republicans’ slurs against people who rely on Medicaid, food stamps (now known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP) and welfare for needy families have any significant basis in reality. They are intended to whip up fears among members of the white middle class that they were being played for fools by people of color who were lazily living it up on taxpayer dollars and ignoring their family responsibilities. It’s been clear for years that these kinds of work requirements don’t actually put people back to work; they just pry people away from the benefits they need.
► From The Hill — Fetterman floats work requirements for bailed-out bank executives
► From The Hill — Jittery Democrats worried about Biden debt ceiling concessions — While the party has been largely unified behind the White House’s strategy in the talks, more Democrats are voicing worries about what could be on the chopping block in order to keep the nation from defaulting on its debt.
► From the LA Times — Newsom seals unusual deal allowing farmworkers new way to unionize — California farmworkers can now unionize more easily after Gov. Gavin Newsom signed legislation Monday in the final step of an unusual compromise struck last year between the Democratic leader and union advocates. The agreement allows farmworkers to unionize by signing cards under a process known as “card-check” instead of being required to vote in-person at a polling place, but removed their ability to unionize through mail-in ballots as the original bill would have allowed.
► From NPR — In a historic step, strippers at an LA bar are poised to unionize — More than a year after launching an effort to unionize, dancers at a topless dive bar in Los Angeles are close to becoming the only unionized group of strippers in the U.S.
► From Vice — CNET workers unionize as ‘automated technology threatens our jobs’ — Around 100 workers are unionizing at CNET, a popular tech news and product review site, in response to a “lack of transparency” from management regarding layoffs and the company’s use of AI, according to an announcement by the union Tuesday.
EDITOR’S NOTE — Ready for a voice at work? Get more information about how you can join together with co-workers and negotiate a fair return for your hard work. Or go ahead and contact a union organizer today!
► From the AP — North Carolina GOP overrides veto of 12-week abortion limit, allowing it to become law — Legislation banning most abortions after 12 weeks of pregnancy will become law in North Carolina after the state’s Republican-controlled General Assembly successfully overrode the Democratic governor’s veto late Tuesday.
► From HuffPost — Montana governor signs law banning 2nd trimester abortions
► From The Guardian — Conservative judges hear challenge to abortion pill access in controversial lawsuit — Appeals court hears case brought by anti-abortion groups calling on the FDA to suspend decades-old approval of mifepristone.
The Stand (June 27, 2022) — Amid attacks on abortion rights, unions must fight back (by Shaunie Wheeler James and Cherika Carter) — We have the tools to transform protests into concrete actions defending bodily autonomy.
► From Vox — Ron DeSantis’s immigration law is already leading to worker shortages — Dozens of videos on social media show empty construction sites and farms in Florida even before a new law goes into effect.
► From HuffPost — ‘Big Bang Theory’ star scorches ‘Jeopardy’ host Ken Jennings for crossing picket line — Wil Wheaton, who regularly guest starred on “The Big Bang Theory” as himself, posted his disgust of “Jeopardy!” co-host Ken Jennings, who is crossing the Writers Guild of America’s picket line to keep the long-time game show running during the writers’ strike. “This is a VERY small town, Ken Jennings,” Wheaton tweeted. “And we will all remember this. Your privilege may protect you right now, but we will *never* forget.”
The Stand posts links to Washington state and national news of interest every weekday morning by 10 a.m.