Roughly 75,000 Kaiser Permanente workers walked off the job early yesterday in the largest healthcare strike in US history. The walkout, which does not include doctors, is slated to last until Saturday, with executives claiming the system would remain open as thousands of temporary workers filled in.
Kaiser Permanente is one of the nation's largest nonprofit healthcare systems, offering both insurance coverage and treatment to its 13 million patients (how it works). Strike leaders claim management, which employs over 200,000 workers and 23,000 physicians, has failed to fully staff its 39 hospitals and hundreds of medical offices across eight states, leading to broad burnout. Workers—from nurses to pharmacists—are demanding a $25 per hour minimum wage, salary increases, strategies to deal with staff shortages, and more.
The strike is just the latest high-profile unionized labor activity this year, with walkouts from autoworkers, Hollywood actors and writers, UPS drivers, hospitality employees, and more. Track all strikes here.