American Red Cross Reaches New Agreements with Additional Unions
Cleveland, OH, April 26, 2012 – The American Red Cross today announced it had reached agreement with several more labor unions across the country, increasing the number of settlements to 20 since last July.
Since members of the Teamsters Local 507 initiated a work stoppage on February 14 in the American Red Cross Blood Services Northern Ohio Region, the Red Cross has reached settlements with two unions in other parts of the country. These agreements include the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) in Dedham, MA and the Office and Professional Employees International Union (OPEIU) in Oakland, CA.
"These agreements show that the Red Cross is working to find resolutions in our union negotiations, and we look forward to a successful conclusion in our negotiations here," said Christy Sabaka, communications program manager for the Red Cross Blood Region.
Health benefits remain the biggest obstacle to reaching a contract agreement with workers in Cleveland. The Red Cross offered its union members a benefits package that is consistent with those provided to non-union employees, but union leaders continue to demand health benefits that are greater than those of any Red Cross employee in the state.
It is also important to note that the 20 settlements reached by the Red Cross with other union locals, including the agreements just in the past few weeks, all have the same health benefits that the union here has rejected. In fact, since last July, three other Teamsters unions have ratified their local contracts including the benefits at issue here.
Meanwhile, the Red Cross continues to do everything it can to meet the blood needs of patients at hospitals in the impacted area through its national inventory system. The organization is grateful for the support of the local community and to those who continue to donate lifesaving blood.
About the American Red Cross
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies approximately 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or join our blog at http://blog.redcross.org.