If you have not received the latest update to the change.org petition, "Stop the Hidden Exploitation of Medical Transcriptionists in MTSOs," there is an announcement of formation of a MT Union, as follows:
"At the end of this update is a letter from the MT Union Organizing Committee, affiliated with SEIU Healthcare, calling all MT/Es who are non-management, United State residents (at this time), to union membership. This is a new, first-time effort to organize in a nontraditional way, the entire industry to work for increased visibility and improved conditions and wages. Due to the disperse and often isolated locations of our workforce, making traditional organizing challenging, this effort makes use of technology to reach and organize large numbers of members to bring our concerns and issues to the public, legislators, healthcare providers, and MTSOs.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicts only a slight decline (3%) in the need for MT/Es through 2026 due to technology and offshoring, offset by increased demand for healthcare services. This means we will be working for quite awhile, while our conditions stagnate or continue to deteriorate.
While some may have had disappointing experiences with unions in the past, unions too are retooling their methods and practice in response to changing conditions. This union is formed by MT/Es for MT/Es with the organizing abilities and resources of SEIU Healthcare. That means MT/E members are responsible for shaping and determining the efforts, actions, and results, not some 3rd party.
This membership is low cost (far lower than traditional union dues) at $5.00 per month, low risk, and members can be as active as they choose, as the higher the volume of members, the louder and more influential will be our voices.
Members are also entitled to general SEIU benefits such as discounts and free college tuition for specific degree programs at an affiliated college for members and their family.
We encourage you to join today, and to invite fellow MT/E contacts in your networks to also join us in fighting for the respectful and just conditions that MT/Es deserve, and which also impacts quality of patient care.
1) A direct fast link to the SEIU Affiliate MT Union page to sign up for membership. https://secure.everyaction.com/gA_KvmHJIU-4ZSgsy6xCfw2
2) Postscript copy of the invitation letter with more information and FAQs.
The MT Coalition on behalf of the MT Union, an SEIU Affiliate
"At the MT Union Organizing Committee, we, like you, are medical transcriptionists concerned about the state of our industry and have decided to do something about it by forming the first-ever Medical Transcriptionist Union. Thank you for taking the time to complete our online survey!
We know that the problems in the medical transcription industry have been happening for a long time and continue to get worse the longer that the voices of MTs are left out of the process.
This is why we have decided to join together with fellow MTs from across the country to form the first ever Medical Transcriptionist Union with SEIU! This is a new effort, differing from a traditional union organization. Because our work is so different than traditional healthcare workers and we are spread out across the country and in different companies, our goal is to organize the entire MT industry rather than a contract at a single employer. By coming together to use our collective power, our goal is to build a member-led, powerful, independent voice for MTs that will bring about visibility and positive changes for our profession. It will take hundreds and thousands of MTs working together to hold elected officials and corporations accountable.
We invite you to join us as a one of the founding members of the MT Union so we can make a difference for our families and all the patients that rely on the quality work we do. You can sign up to be a member here for just $5.00 per month, far less than traditional union dues.
As a member of the MT Union, you are eligible for all of the member benefits of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), including discounts and free college tuition which you can learn about here: www.seiumb.org
Even more important, as a MT Union Member, you will receive updates about our work, have the chance to share your story and participate in collective actions to fight for the changes we all deserve!
the end of this email is a list of frequently asked questions (FAQs).
If you have any questions, feel free to ask our Organizer
with SEIU, Brandon Nessen, who can be reached
at Brandon.Nessen@seiuhcmn.org . You
can visit the local union website at www.seiuhcmn.org
look forward to working with you!
MT Union Organizing Committee
Q. I’m not sure if change is really possible.
A. We’re going up against very rich and powerful people that have been lowering our pay and standards over the years. It’s not going to be easy, but if we can get enough MTs in enough places willing to speak out, share stories and take action, we can make our profession more visible and more respected. We can expose the corporate greed that not only takes advantage of us as MTs but also puts our patients’ health at risk. If we do nothing, what do you think will change?
What do I get for being a member? Is there going to be a Union
A. As a member, you will be eligible for SEIU member benefits offered through www.seiumb.org but the main reason MTs are coming together as members is to have a chance to fight for the changes we deserve like fair pay, benefits and working conditions. Because our work is so different than traditional healthcare workers and we are spread out across the country and in different companies, we will likely be organizing the entire industry rather than a contract at a single employer.
I don’t think I have time to get really involved in something
A. That’s understandable. The good thing about organizing ourselves as a group is that not everyone has to take on the same roles and for many MTs, simply joining as a member is a powerful way to support our effort and stay updated, can we count on you to take this first step with us?
I need more information and want to do more research.
A. We get it. This is a new project and it’s normal to have questions about it. But the truth is, we as MTs and members will decide how to shape our new organization, decide how it works and what we want to focus on. What would you like to the MT Union do? Are you willing to be part of it and make that happens?
I’m concerned I will be retaliated against by my employer if I
join a union.
A. Fear of retaliation is a common concern of people when forming a union. Here are a few responses to this: 1) your membership status is not public, so your employer will never know you are a member unless you decide to show your support publicly, 2) when we do take public actions it will be once we have formed a large group of MTs so there is power and safety in numbers (they can’t fire everyone), 3) it is illegal under federal law for an employer to retaliate in any way against workers for being engaged in Union activity, and 4) what is the alternative? If we don’t do something and start to get organized, things will only get worse in our industry."