- The Daughters of Charity hospital system has filed a lawsuit against SEIU-United Health Workers West alleging that the union used "extortionist threats" to try to block the sale of six of its hospitals to Prime Healthcare.
- The lawsuit claims that the union and Blue Wolf, another bidder for the hospitals, used threats and tactics that cost them tens of millions of dollars due to delays.
- The union claims it was only acting on behalf of its workers and that the lawsuit is nothing more than a "legal hissy fit."
According to SF Gate, the lawsuit alleges that the president of United Healthcare Workers West, Dave Regan, told Prime's chief executive that Attorney General Kamala Harris would not approve the sale unless Prime agreed to remain neutral in union elections at its other California hospitals; there was no explanation as to why he supposedly knew under what terms Harris would, or would not, approve the sale. The suit also claims that the union discouraged other potential bidders by promoting their favored buyer, Blue Wolf.
Daughters of Charity stands to lose millions of dollars and may even be forced into bankruptcy if the sale falls through. If the allegations are true, the union's tactics could set a costly precedent for other potential hospital sales.