It's been a while since I have provided an update on SEIU's corporate campaign against BIDMC and on its attempts to organize the health care workers in this city. For those who were away on Labor Day, you might have missed this interview by Bob Oakes on WBUR with the local head of the union. The blog post to which Mr. Oakes refers is this one.
What is striking about the interview is to compare the broad agenda set forth with actual actions by SEIU. Whereas the past several years have been characterized by spending hundreds of thousands of dollars disparaging BIDMC; there has been virtually no activity with regard to the other hospitals mentioned, those in the Partners Healthcare System.
There has been a theory circulating around town that this tactical decision to avoid MGH and Brigham and Women's Hospital might have its origins in the personal relationship between the former head of the SEIU and the Chief Operating Officer of PHS, who served as an Deputy Secretary of Labor under President Clinton. Will SEIU's reluctance to take on the PHS hospitals be put aside now that Mr. Stern has left the SEIU and the COO is leaving Partners?