Gov. Brown has now signed our hospital bill, Assembly Bill 276, “The Central Coast Hospital Authority Act,” into law.
The bill, authored by Assembly Luis Alejo, opens the way for Natividad Medical Center to leave the county and form a public authority with another healthcare agency, if and when the time is right. This will ensure that we remain a leading health care provider for Monterey County families.
SEIU member leaders worked diligently alongside Assemblyman Alejo and management to ensure that patients’ and workers’ rights and access to healthcare will not be compromised if we form a public authority with another health care agency.
“It was important for all of us to be involved to ensure our community continues to have good health care our employees have good worker protections. To be involved in this has been an honor.”
Joe Ybarra, Hospital Stationary Engineer, helped lobby legislators in Sacramento
Our NMC member leaders are now working on preparing for a potential transition to an authority and ensuring that workers maintain a strong voice in preparing for this transition, if and when it happens. The County Board of Supervisors would also need to approve any such transition.
Maintaining our safety net hospital in Monterey County will remain a priority in improving the delivery of care to all Monterey County residents.
Natividad member leaders also negotiated to ensure the bill includes strong worker protections on issues like CalPERS, benefits, seniority, and working conditions.
Passing this bill was critical for us to stand ready to tackle the upcoming challenges of health care reform, which will put new pressure on our healthcare safety net as millions more Californians become eligible for healthcare, especially in rural areas such as Monterey County.
Members took an active role in helping the bill pass. We lobbied our elected leaders in Monterey County and Sacramento; we attended worksite meetings; we held a tele-townhall; and we signed and submitted petitions.