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Kaiser Permanente, unions agree to 3-year national contract

Health provider Kaiser Permanente and a coalition of unions of its workers reached agreement on a three-year contract early Saturday that covers wages, benefits and wellness programs for employees.

The agreement, struck about 3 a.m., affects some 100,000 members of the Coalition of Permanente Unions, including nurses, pharmacists, service workers, technicians, psychologists and lab scientists, according to a joint statement from the company and its unions. The coalition represents workers in California, Oregon, Washington, Colorado, Ohio, Maryland, Virginia, Georgia and Hawaii.

The new agreement calls for a 3% wage increase the first year, then 2% increases each of the next two years.

In addition, the agreement would reward workers for collective reductions in body mass index, cholesterol and blood pressure, as well as the cessation of smoking. The contract offers employee education, healthful and affordable food options and chances to engage in healthful activities on non-work time, according to the joint statement.

The health management organization will contribute $19 million a year to existing trust funds for investment in its workers' career development.

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 -- Sam Quinones

twitter.com/samquinones7

 
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