Health, Labor Leaders Address Unions

After more than two years of consultations, leaders from Catholic health care, the labor movement and the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops have agreed on a set of principles designed to ensure a fair process when health care workers decide whether to join a union. A 12-page document laying out the principles, titled Respecting the Just Rights of Workers: Guidance and Options for Catholic Health Care and Unions, was released on June 22. “The heart of this unusual consensus is that it’s up to workers—not bishops, hospital managers or union leaders—to decide...whether or not to be represented by a union and if so, which union, in the workplace,” said Cardinal Theodore E. McCarrick, retired archbishop of Washington and a participant in the consultations. “Because Catholic health care is a ministry, not an industry, how it treats its workers and how organized labor treats Catholic health care are not simply internal matters,” the cardinal added. The document calls on unions and employers to respect “each other’s mission and legitimacy” and to pledge not to “demean or undermine each other’s institutions, leaders, representatives, effectiveness or motives.”

Comments are automatically closed two weeks after an article's initial publication. See our comments policy for more.

Don't miss the best from America

Sign up for our Newsletter to get the Jesuit perspective on news, faith and culture.

The latest from america

A group of lay theologians and clergy opposed “Amoris Laetitia” have released a letter “correcting” Pope Francis, part of an ongoing effort directed against the pope’s focus on pastoral outreach to divorced and civilly remarried Catholics.
America StaffSeptember 23, 2017

The martyrdom of Blessed Stanley Francis Rother "fills us with sadness but also gives us joy to see the kindness, generosity and courage of a great man of faith," Cardinal Angelo Amato, prefect of the Congregation for Saints' Causes, said Sept. 23 in Oklahoma City.

Catholic News ServiceSeptember 23, 2017
Cardinal Patrick D’Rozario, the archbishop of Dhaka, has described the recent attack on the Rohingya community in Myanmar, as “a crime against humanity.”
Gerard O'ConnellSeptember 23, 2017
This year the Grand Bargain on refugees seems increasingly fragile.
Kevin ClarkeSeptember 22, 2017