Chinese Community Health Plan Extends Coverage To Locked-Out Hotel Workers
Chinese Community Health Plan officials on Wednesday agreed to extend health coverage for two months to about 190 currently enrolled San Francisco hotel employees if a labor dispute over the workers' contract is not resolved before Dec. 1, the San Francisco Chronicle reports (San Francisco Chronicle, 11/18).
Hotel employees on Sept. 29 began striking because they said contract negotiations with employers had stalled. Workers at four hotels in San Francisco on Oct. 13 ended their two-week strike, but the hotels -- and 10 others where employees did not strike -- said they would maintain an employee lockout until they reached a contract settlement.
Last week, four hotel management trustees voted to block the use of $4.4 million from a $22 million joint hotel-union emergency trust fund to finance workers' health benefits from December to January (California Healthline, 11/17).
CCHP officials made the decision to extend coverage with Chinese Hospital and the Chinese Community Health Care Association.
CCHP CEO Richard Loos said, "We are doing this because it is consistent with our mission to serve our community."
Union officials also have requested that PacifiCare, which insures about 610 hotel employees, extend members' health care benefits if the dispute continues. PacifiCare is considering the request. Kaiser Permanente on Tuesday agreed to continue coverage for two months to about 3,500 hotel workers involved in the dispute (San Francisco Chronicle, 11/18).