One Year Later, Union Election for Planned Parenthood Orange County Workers Scheduled

UFCW Local 324

May 17, 2024
Contact: Jenna Thompson, 949.246.1620, 

One Year Later, Union Election for Planned Parenthood Orange County Workers Scheduled 

Buena Park, CA – On Monday, May 13, 2024, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) ruled that workers at Planned Parenthood clinics across Orange County, California are an appropriate bargaining unit and directed a union election to be held. The Administrative Medical Assistants (AMAs) at Planned Parenthood clinics in Orange County became the first at the organization in California to file for a union election with the National Labor Relations Board on May 12, 2023, but since then, Planned Parenthood Orange and San Bernardino County CEO Jon Dunn has continually defied their choice to unionize and prolonged the election process by attempting to add other classifications and other clinics to their vote with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). One year later, the NLRB has ruled in favor of the workers.

“I thought Planned Parenthood would support the choices I make for my body and my life as a first generation Latina,” said Alex Marin, a Float Administrative Medical Assistant at Planned Parenthood in Orange County. “I need a union because I don’t get paid a living wage. Without a living wage, I don’t have the reproductive freedom that Planned Parenthood claims to protect. When Planned Parenthood delayed our election, I wondered, why do they not want me and my co-workers to have a say in our working conditions and patient care? I know my patients and their stories. I know my co-workers and their lives. I know what we need. And I am finally a step closer to achieving it.”

The NLRB found that the petitioned for bargaining unit is appropriate because Orange County AMAs not only share a community of interest with each other, but also that they are readily identifiable as a group and sufficiently distinct from San Bernardino County AMAs. The Board also scheduled a mail-in ballot election for May 29, 2024 – June 20, 2024.

“I am really excited about the future of PPOSBC now that we have secured an election!” said Elaine Lopez, a Float Administrative Medical Assistant at Planned Parenthood in Orange County. “It’s been a long time coming and I hope Planned Parenthood realizes that this is just the beginning; I hope Planned Parenthood regrets cutting our pay back in 2022 because that was the catalyst and now two years later, we finally get to form a union and show the company that we are not afraid of them.”

Planned Parenthood has always been a fierce advocate for patients’ right to choose, but as an employer, Planned Parenthood has engaged in unfair labor practices and delay throughout the unionization campaign, which has suppressed the voices of workers. Earlier this year the National Labor Relations Board found merit to an unfair labor practice charge by UFCW Local 324 alleging that PPOSBC terminated an employee for her union activity, engaged in surveillance of employees, and improperly removed employees’ union literature from the employee break room.

“Coming together with a union is critical to protect these workers’ rights, whose workloads have increased exponentially since Planned Parenthood has opened their doors to out-of-state patients needing health care, and to ensure patients receive quality care,” said Andrea Zinder, president, UFCW Local 324. “They cannot continue to provide patients with the health care they deserve when they walk in those doors unless they have a say in their working conditions. We’re glad the National Labor Relations Board heard these workers who provide fundamental care to patients and helped ensure they have the opportunity to have their voices heard in a fair election free from intimidation. It’s time Jon Dunn finally recognize his employees’ strong desire to join a union after two years of fighting.”

On September 22, 2023, workers at Planned Parenthood clinics across Orange County, California held their own Free and Democratic Election where they voted unanimously 32-0 to form a union with the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Local 324. Orange County Supervisor Vicente Sarmiento monitored the vote count and declared the result.

The UFCW represents over 55,000 healthcare professionals across the country, helping them win safe staffing levels for workers, respect and transparency from management and contracts that emphasize public health. In Orange County, UFCW Local 324 represents several thousand healthcare professionals in retail pharmacies, labs and at Kaiser Permanente.

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