FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 15, 2019
OHSU Interns, Residents and Fellows File For Union Representation
The latest in a string of professionals forming unions at OHSU and around the nation
Interns, residents, and fellows at OHSU - also known as house officers - submitted union authorization cards on Tuesday, October 15th. A strong majority of the over 800 house officers signed authorization cards signaling their desire to form OHSU-House Officers Union/AFSCME. House officers are a crucial part of clinical operations at OHSU, often the first physician a patient sees in the emergency room, hospital, or clinic.
“As physicians on the front line, we need a real voice to make decisions that affect our patients, our ongoing medical education, and our lives. We believe a union can facilitate this. We are proud to work at OHSU and we are confident that negotiations will strengthen OHSU’s ability to provide world-class patient care and medical education” said Dr. Heather Buxton, a second-year psychiatry resident.
OHSU is one of the last public institutions on the West Coast without unionized house officers. This campaign was inspired by residents and attending physicians across the nation and greatly informed by residents who have been members of the OHSU community through the entirety of their medical education.
Following submission of the authorization cards, the Employee Relations Board will verify cards signed by eligible employees at which point the House Officers Union and OHSU will head into bargaining the first contract.
“These workers have clearly shown they want a union, the law allows the employer to recognize the union. We expect OHSU will work with AFSCME and the Employment Relations Board to quickly certify this unit. As a public healthcare and research institution their resources need to be focused on increasing the quality of care, not fighting their employees who choose to exercise their basic rights,” said Stacy Chamberlain, Executive Director of Oregon AFSCME