National Review Highlights SEIU Fraud in PCA Election
The Center’s now year-long decertification fight has received a lot of national, state and local media coverage, including The Wall Street Journal. People around the country are shocked to find out that Medicaid funds intended for the disabled and their families have been hi-jacked by the Service Employees International Union (SEIU).
We estimate that SEIU Healthcare Minnesota is taking in as much as $4.7 million annually from Medicaid. Since 2015, the union has been “representing” family members and other caregivers who work as personal care attendants (PCAs) for disabled people eligible for help under Medicaid. PCAs were declared “public employees” under legislation passed by a DFL majority in 2013.
The idea behind the Medicaid program is simple: empower disabled Minnesotans to stay home and out of institutions by hiring help. Unless you are new to these pages, you have heard me talk about this wonderful program many times.
The latest coverage comes from National Review where our good friends Akash Chougule & Jason Flohrs from Americans for Prosperity highlighted the terrible fraud committed by the SEIU in the certification election back in 2014. Another friend, Matt Patterson, introduced below, has done a great job of reporting the stories of fraud our project has uncovered:
Patricia Johansen, a personal-care attendant in Otter Tail County, Minn., told Matt Patterson of the Center for Worker Freedom that she never voted for the union or agreed to join and have dues deducted. In the fall of 2015, however, she noticed that the SEIU had been skimming dues from her Medicaid funds. When she complained, the SEIU said it had her signed dues-deduction authorization card on file.
Patricia, who is left-handed and “writes in an elegant and distinctive cursive” script, requested a copy — and received a form that had been filled out in her name in “crude, block letters” with a “clumsy” signature. Patricia had her dues refunded after notifying the union that she had been defrauded, but others have not been as lucky.
Now she and other personal-care attendants are collecting signatures to put the SEIU back on the ballot in hopes of decertifying this union that appears to have engaged in voter disenfranchisement, identity theft, and unlawful dues deduction, all in order to divert Medicaid funds to its own coffers.
There are many stories like Patricia Johansen’s that we have placed before the state and the Ramsey County court; and we have asked for a full review of the union election given the wide-spread fraud.
The article also gives a nice update on where the MNPCA decertification project stands:
The coalition has collected more than 6,500 signatures — nearly double the number of caregivers who voted to unionize — but the Dayton administration is moving the goalposts. According to Patterson of the Center for Worker Freedom, when the coalition originally submitted its signatures in December, it was told that both a hearing and an election would be scheduled. But shortly thereafter the administration revoked that decision, at the behest of the SEIU.
Yes, the bad news is MNPCA’s decertification petition is still on hold but the good news is, we are still in the fight. We are also expecting hearings to be held in the Legislature this session:
Officials can and should put an end to this racket. One option is through state action. State representative Marion O’Neill, chair of the Subcommittee on Employee Relations, has called for an investigation into fraud in the unionization effort. She is scheduling “full, robust hearings” on how the election took place and why dues were deducted without permission. She hopes to exposing and end any wrongdoing.
The other option is to get Congress and HHS to ban this abuse of Medicaid funds. This is NOT what Americans had in mind when they agreed to fund this program.
And there is more good news: the SEIU is on the ropes financially following its mega spending and mega loss in the 2016 election. SEIU’s boss has ordered a 30% cutback in budgets and layoffs around the country.
MNPCA and the Center have been happy to help by forcing SEIU to spend money to defend the indefensible.
SEIU is a far-left “Progressive” union that supports Planned Parenthood, Black Lives Matter, unfettered immigration (including illegal) and other positions far out of the mainstream of American politics and culture.
The SEIU preys on the vulnerable by taking their hard-earned union dues and then spends it on politics and lobbying. And they undermine our political discourse by encouraging people to hate their country—the same country people are literally dying to get into–and to blame someone else for where they find themselves in life (working as a custodian, bus driver or health care worker, all respectable, good and important jobs). Grievance politics at their worst.
Why couldn’t SEIU just fairly represent people who want help negotiating fair working conditions? Why would SEIU take more money than it needs, or commit fraud to get more unions dues?
It is unlikely that a majority of its members support the SEIU’s far-left political agenda but if a member does, they should just write a check. After all, it a political contribution.