Our region’s health care leaders are disappointed following Culver City’s approval Monday of a $5-an-hour mandated pay hike for hospital workers in the city’s single hospital.
While we agree these workers are heroes, we’re troubled by the way this ordinance originated and advanced. As revealed in a June 12 editorial published in 11 Southern California News Group papers, the move did not result from a grassroots push for gratitude and recognition, but was a hardball, astroturf move cooked up by a labor union representing the hospital’s employees.
It’s worth noting that the affected facility, Southern California Hospital at Culver City, backed employees throughout the pandemic with bonuses, child care, hotel stays, and other support. It went out of its way to stand with and behind workers, even though it had already come to terms with the union on a contract.
Using the municipal political process to advance special-interest aims is a misuse of our sacred democratic process. This particular story involves unacknowledged communications between union representatives and at least one council member. The result is a lack of transparency for voters.
These unfortunate actions will also likely result in litigation that will create more negative press and costs for Culver City residents and concern for the city’s business community.
If other local governments followed Culver City’s example, we would call this a negative precedent. However, we believe that anyone who understands these events will conclude it is a bad example of policymaking that should not be replicated.
We strongly oppose this mandate – and urge other principled individuals and organizations to speak out against it. This kind of politics belongs in history books — not this week’s news accounts.
As always, take care, stay informed and stay connected.