Government Relations, Chair 200 First Street SW Rochester, MN 55905
Dear Ms. Harrington:
Thank you for bringing your Operations staff to meet with leaders from SEIU and UNITE HERE last Friday to discuss the Mayo Destination Medical Center (DMC) and the related legislative proposal. While we have significant concerns and unanswered questions, we are excited about the possibility of significant job growth in the health care and hospitality sectors.
We look forward to meeting again in the very near future and to discussing specific proposals about the future DMC workforce and how collective bargaining can ensure these are quality jobs. We feel that, along with the Minnesota Nurses Association, we can reach an agreement that will preserve Mayo’s competitive status and promote living wage jobs.
In particular we suggest you examine the following ideas as a basis for further conversation:
• Codifying what part of the future workforce would consist of expanded operations at Mayo Methodist and St. Mary’s hospitals which would be subject to accretion under the existing SEIU HCMN contract.
• A private neutrality and chard-check agreement with SEIU HCMN and MNA for some portion of Mayo’s new or existing healthcare workforce.
- Assurances that any union hospitality facility demolished or restructured in the DMC zone would remain union.
- A commitment that new hospitality facilities (employing workers under NAICS Code 721100) would be required to have a labor peace agreement in place prior to construction.
Precisely because the DMC proposal will have a tremendous impact, either for good or bad, on workers in the Rochester area, we need to get clear information from you before the bill moves forward in the legislature. Therefore we will send the attached letter to legislative leaders. It urges them to refrain from moving the bill forward until our questions have been answered.
On behalf of UNITE HERE Minnesota, MNA, and SEIU Healthcare Minnesota we hope that we can reach an agreement quickly and then work jointly to pass this bill.
Nancy Goldman, President UNITE HERE, Local 17
Jamie Gulley, President SEIU Healthcare Minnesota
Linda Hamilton, RN, President Minnesota Nurses Association
Walt Frederickson, Executive Director Minnesota Nurses Association
Mayo Needs to Answer Key Questions About Destination Medical Center
On February 7, 2013, bills were introduced in the Minnesota Legislature to request more than a half billion dollars of state assistance to the Destination Medical Center (DMC) plans drafted by Mayo Clinic and Mayo Health System. This plan lacks transparency and failed to involve key stakeholders or affected communities in and around Rochester and the state of Minnesota. February 7 was the first time most people even knew there was a plan, much less what it contained. It is very clear that as things stand there are too many unanswered questions about DMC to justify support for the project.
Minnesota Nurses Association (MNA), UNITE HERE Minnesota and SEIU Healthcare Minnesota represent three of the largest stakeholders affected by the proposed DMC. Representing nearly 50,000 families in the health care and hospitality industry in Minnesota, we are left with no choice but to OPPOSE the DMC plan until Mayo Clinic and Mayo Health System engage the community and all stakeholders to develop a DMC proposal they all understand and can support. Furthermore, we ask the legislature to withhold support for the DMC until Mayo answers key questions about the impact this proposal will have on our jobs, our homes and our communities.
1. What projects does the DMC envision building and where will they be located?
2. What jobs will be created and what do they look like; will they be union jobs or low paying jobs without benefits?
3. What is the impact on other health care and hospitality employers in the state of Minnesota?
4. Why does the DMC want authority to over-ride local government planning decisions and why should the state grant DMC the powers of eminent domain over our homes?
5. What is Mayo’s commitment to the state and low income patients in return for this tax payer money? How much charity care will be guaranteed in exchange for the state’s commitment to this project? Will Mayo be included as a provider in all health plans throughout the state?
6. Will recipients of this investment commit to labor peace agreements with the workers and the unions that represent them?
7. What will be the impact on our school districts and the impact on property taxes if tax-paying businesses are removed to make way for expanded non-profit (non-taxed) institutions?
The Minnesota Nurses Association unites 20,000 nurses in Minnesota’s Healthcare Industry, UniteHERE unites 6,000 workers in Minnesota’s Hospitality Industry and SEIU Healthcare Minnesota unites 17,000 workers in Minnesota’s Healthcare Industry, including more than 2,000 workers at Mayo Clinic in Rochester.
PDF copy of letter: 130312_Mayo letter