The national health care company Kaiser Permanente concluded contract negotiations with unions representing nearly 50,000 employees nationally, including more than 1,800 employees in Hawaii.

Kaiser and the Alliance of Health Care Unions issued a joint press release Saturday announcing the unions had called off strikes that had been planned for multiple states, including Hawaii.

The agreement was reached Saturday but still needs to be ratified before it can go into effect. If it’s ratified, it will be retroactive to Oct. 1.

Demonstrators carry signs near Kaiser Permanente Honolulu Office. 2 feb 2015. Cory Lum/Civil Beat
In 2015, Kaiser Permanente employees rallied in Honolulu. Hawaii workers were prepared to strike on Nov. 22. Cory Lum/Civil Beat/2015

“This contract protects our patients, provides safe staffing, and guarantees fair wages and benefits for every Alliance member,” executive director of the Alliance of Health Care Unions Hal Ruddick said in a press release.

Christian Meisner, senior vice president and chief human resources officer at Kaiser Permanente, said in a press release that the agreement “underscores our unwavering commitment to our employees by maintaining industry-leading wages and benefits.”

Employees will get annual wage increases, maintain retirement and health care benefits and receive new chances to get bonuses.

The agreement also has “new safe staffing and workload language.”

A spokesman for Unite Here Local 5, a member of the Alliance of Health Care Unions, previously said Hawaii workers have been concerned about understaffing and pushed for language to address that.

Quality journalism takes time.

A story that takes fives minutes to read often takes days to report.
Quality journalism takes time and resources to produce, but with support from readers like you, Civil Beat can investigate issues and publish stories that are otherwise difficult to fund.
Become a donor and help support Civil Beat’s next investigation.

About the Author